Portland, Maine – During the pandemic, motorists stepped on the gas pedal and the police were worried because the last part of the summer trip would get busy.

The latest data shows that the number of highway fatalities in 2020 is the highest in more than a decade, despite the fact that cars and truck The number of miles driven during the pandemic has decreased.

“Summer is an extremely dangerous time. It ends with Labor Day, the last cheers,” said Pam Shadel Fischer of the Governor’s Highway Safety Association.

Traffic data shows that a higher number of deaths is associated with a higher average speed, in addition to more people driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol, and a slight decrease in seat belt usage.

The motorist did not seem to slow down.

“People are flying around on the road,” the Maine State Police Colonel. Doug Cropper talks about summer traffic on Interstate 95. “This is ridiculous.”

Ticket issued by the California Highway Patrol Speeding Officials said that from January to June, vehicle speeds above 100 mph were almost twice the pre-pandemic levels, and the number of tickets for reckless driving was also increasing.

In New York State, speeding is the leading cause of the percentage of deaths and the total number of deaths Speeding ticket Officials said there was an increase from January to June compared with the year before the pandemic.

New York State Police spokesperson Beau Duffy said: “As we enter the center of the holiday travel season, traffic on the highway increases and people continue to be concerned about the increase in speeding and aggressive driving.”

Extreme speeding can be traced back to the beginning of the pandemic.

As the police were distracted by citizens’ disobedience and reduced their routine stops for safety, inaccessible roads in many places quickly became the wild west. In New York City, Supercar picture Ferrari and Lamborghini Burning on the empty street, the roaring engine disturbed the residents who were trying to fall asleep. Motorists from coast to coast were fined at dizzying speed.

Several lead-footed motorists took advantage of this opportunity to set a new record in an illegal and uninterrupted race from coast to coast called Cannonball Run.

A Mainer uses a rented one Ford Mustang Equipped with a 130-gallon fuel tank, the GT set a record for a single-player race from New York to Los Angeles in 25 hours and 55 minutes. Soon after his record-breaking short trip, a team set a new record.

Fred Ashmore called New York a “ghost town” because he accelerated to leave at the beginning of the pandemic, with a top speed of 159 mph and an average speed of about 108 mph during a 2,806-mile trip. Hour.

“No one never accelerates,” he said. “I just run faster and faster.”

This National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Warnings about speeding and reckless driving were issued early in the pandemic.

The agency expects the death toll to fall as the mileage traveled is reduced, similar to the decline during the previous recession. But throughout the pandemic, the number of deaths continued to increase, and even increased in the second half of this year.

In the end, despite a 13.2% reduction in mileage, the number of traffic deaths across the country in 2020 has increased by approximately 7.2% to 38,680. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimate. This is the deadliest year on the highway since 2007.

Joseph Schwetman, a transportation expert at DePaul University, says that multiple factors are at play. Some drivers act boldly because of lack of law enforcement, while others tend to follow the crowd.

At the same time, motorists feel that speeding is safer because they believe too much airbag, Anti-lock brake And other security features, he said.

Unfortunately, there is no panacea that can reverse this trend.

Police and highway safety officials must ensure that speed limits take into account all users, and then they must vigorously enforce these restrictions in the obvious presence, spokesman Joseph Young said. Highway Safety Insurance Association.

Some police departments are launching public awareness campaigns.

“Summer vacation should be a time of joy and family, not sadness and tragedy,” said John Baptiste, captain of the Washington State Patrol. California, Oregon, and Washington started summer travel security enforcement.

In places like Los Angeles County, California, severe congestion will naturally slow down motorists.

But Fisher of the Governor’s Highway Safety Association said those flashing blue lights are still the best antidote for speeding and bad behavior.

“High-visibility law enforcement work,” she said. “When people see the police, they think twice before acting.”


Associated Press’s pandemic report

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