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The relationship between commuting and auto fatalities

A Louisiana motorist may view flying as a dangerous prospect, but automobile travel is actually 300 times as dangerous in terms of fatal outcomes. This is primarily due to the fact that people travel by car far more than by airplane, which implies that more time on the road increases one's risk of dying in an automobile accident. While road conditions can play a major role in one's risk of fatality accidents, these statistics could prompt a motorist to make changes in residential or career choices to minimize driving risks.

Workers who reduces their daily round-trip commute by just two miles can decrease their annual miles traveled by 500, based on a typical number of days in a work year. This equates to moving just one mile closer to work or choosing a shorter route. If every household in the nation made a similar change, the annual miles traveled would decline enough to decrease the number of fatalities by nearly 550, according to statistics. A shorter commute might also reduce the risk of issues such as head-on accidents due to fatigued driving. Longer commute times may also increase the risks of distracted driving due to texting or calling.

Technology has played a significant role in the nation's automotive history as well, impacting fatality rates dramatically as safety belts were required in all vehicles in 1968. The improvement of collision warning systems could create a similar decrease in fatality rates in the near future. Although self-driving cars are still in the early stages of development, these may also provide enhanced safety for motorists in coming years.

Those who have long commutes may not have alternative choices for reducing their hours on the road. However, it is helpful to analyze one's habits to minimize personal risks for car accidents. The use of hands-free technology for contacting family members during a commute, for example, may minimize the potential for a distracted driving accident that could result in serious legal and medical consequences.

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