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City Driving is Actually Safer Than Rural Driving

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On: Wed, Jul 31, 2013 at 9:56AM | By: Elizabeth Puckett

City Driving is Actually Safer Than Rural Driving

Most people envision the backroads of this country to hold charm and easy driving, but they also hold something else: the title of being the most dangerous place to drive! It’s true, the deadliest roads in this country are in rural areas, not urban streets like you might think.

Many people are shocked to learn that a new study indicates that people who live in the United States’ more populated city areas are far less likely to be involved in a fatal car accident—20 percent less—than people who live in more rural areas.

Rural areas pose more risks to drivers that city drivers don’t routinely come face to face with. People have a tendency to speed more in rural areas as the roads allow for longer periods of acceleration; people who live in cities tend to speed less due to a lack of opportunity. There is also a higher rate of drunk driving on rural roads than in cities. Drivers and passengers also wear seat belts less often when on backroads; seat belt laws are easier to enforce by police officers in more populated areas.

There’re also problems with under-development of rural roads and the lack of safety programs for less populated areas. A stretch of rural highway will usually lack in traffic lights and signs, as well as design to lessen the risks of intersections in areas where people tend to speed.

Interstate driving is also a lot safer than driving on backroads since cars are all moving in one direction and the median eliminates oncoming traffic. There’re also no intersecting roads for interstates since on-ramps and off-ramps remove cross traffic. On the interstate, motorist have far fewer things they can hit outside of other cars and guard rails.

Response time to accidents in also a big factor when it comes to life and death after an auto accident. If someone is involved in a wreck in the city, there are more witnesses to call for help and ambulances are typically more readily available. In rural areas, a single car crash might go undetected for hours and help has to travel from fafrther away.

This comes as no surprise to public safety officials; they have been working on a remedy for this problem for many years. Many safety initiatives and emergency response systems have been introduced to help combat these tragedies.

The number of auto-related fatalities has been on a decline for many years now, but the amount of fataliities in rural areas still greatly outnumber those in urban areas.


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