When more traffic means less crashes


13A decline in the number of accidents has been reported in Hampton Roads despite having an increase in local traffic.

In the past few years statistics showed that there has been a reduce in car accidents not just in the local areas but the trend was true also for the entire nation. In Hampton Roads accidents have dropped by 27.5 percent in the past six years. And since 2000, according to the figures released by the Department of Motor Vehicles and planning organization, reported accidents in Hampton Roads dropped by 18.4 percent despite the notable increase in local traffic by 8.4 percent.

Figures also showed that the place displaying the most abrupt decline in incidents of car crashes is Portsmouth. According to records accidents in Portsmouth have been reduced by 70.5 percent since 2000.

It is surprising to see a different trend shown by these figures regarding car crashes in Hampton Roads. In theory if traffic is thicker then car accidents are likely to occur nonetheless with the current statistical figures the case of Hampton Roads does not seem to follow the aforementioned general trend.

Auto insurance companies particularly make use of this theoretically grounded notion that more congestion would result to more car crashes. This is primarily the reason why insuring a car in urban areas where traffic is mostly heavily congested would cost people more than insuring cars to be driven in rural areas. The more cars on the road the higher is the risk of crashes: this is the generally accepted trend the statistical figures of Hampton Roads is challenging nonetheless any sufficing particular reason behind this cannot be pin-pointed yet.

There are several factors people are looking at to clarify things out. Experts say that there is actually a slight decrease of vehicle counts in Hampton Roads from 2007 to 2008. This could somehow explain a bit of the situation however it still could not directly cage an even quicker decline rate of car accidents. Others say that new laws guiding young drivers could be the reason. Now young drivers should have more driving hours with their parents before they can get their driver’s license. The more time they drive with guidance, the better drivers they become. Others say it could be the red-light cameras in Virginia Beach. Some would say it could be due to the new and improved car safety technology.

Or maybe it is because of the affluence of all that is mentioned plus the concerted efforts of engineers, educators and enforcers.