One of the most common ways for people in Virginia to suffer injuries or lose their lives is in an auto accident. These collisions happen unexpectedly for many reasons. The Virginia Department of Transportation and lawmakers are sufficiently concerned about a recent spike in crashes that a variety of safety measures are affecting. As this moves forward, people should be aware of what is being done while being aware that they are still at risk.
Infrastructure and driver behavior are the focus of the initiative
The VDOT tries to address driver behaviors that tend to lead to accidents. That includes drivers who are impaired, those who drive at excessive speed and people who fail to wear their seatbelts. Impairment led to nearly 14,600 crashes between 2017 and 2021. During that time, there were more than 13,400 accidents because of speeding. People failing to wear their seatbelts was a problem in just under 8,200 accidents. Pedestrians and bicyclists were also vulnerable with almost 2,700 accidents involving them.
In 2021, there were 7,397 accidents with serious injuries. Between 2020 and 2021, road deaths increased from 121 to 968. With infrastructure improvements, the hope is that if the roads are designed better, injuries and deaths will decrease. Examples of areas that are targets for safety projects include two-lane rural roads and intersections. The work will be done in phases with the VDOT already mapping out how it is to be funded.
Even as these plans are in place, the safety problem persists
The statistics show how worrisome auto accidents have become for everyone and the objective with these initiatives is to address the catalysts for such a widespread increase. Despite that, people need to be alert and prepared for the litany of dangers they may face.
If a person is simply going about their business, obeying all the laws and being vigilant, they can still be in an accident. Perhaps a distracted driver ran a stop sign and crashed into them as they cross the street. Or they might have been rear-ended by a driver who was under the influence.
With the medical costs, lost time on the job and long-term issues that can result, having comprehensive guidance with what options are available is essential. Calling for assistance is a first step toward recovering sufficient compensation for all that was lost.