It is a terrifying feeling to be driving down a highway, side street, or even an exit ramp and see another vehicle barreling down towards you without any signs of stopping.
How do you avoid it, and why is the car going the wrong way? These are common questions many drivers who encounter a wrong-way driver ask. Unfortunately, many drivers are severally injured or killed in these types of collisions.
The proof is in the facts
It is essential to understand why wrong-way accidents occur and what you can do to defend against a collision when it comes to defending against wrong-way drivers.
Here are a few facts to keep in mind about wrong-way drivers:
- Wrong-way collisions kill 300 to 400 people each year In the united states
- 58% of wrong-way drivers were under the influence of drugs and alcohol
- Collisions are more likely to occur between the hours of 11 p.m. and 3 a.m., which makes seeing oncoming traffic difficult and challenging at times.
- Not all wrong-way drivers are under the influence of drugs and alcohol. Some drivers are in a hurry and mistake the exit of a freeway for an entrance.
- Collisions due occur in the daylight
Wrong-way drivers and other motorists aren’t the only ones in harm’s way. Often police will attempt to get the driver’s attention and force or stop them from continuing on their path to avoid other motorists.
Defensive driving is key to avoiding wrong-way collisions
Avoiding an accident is challenging, but you can do something to help guard against wong-way drivers safely, which include:
- Drive in the right lane – Most wrong-way drivers believe that they are either in the slow or the right lane, but in fact, they are in the left lane.
- Scan your surroundings for potential danger.
- If you see a wrong-way driver, call 911 and provide a detailed description of the vehicle and which direction it is traveling to help prevent a fatal accident.
To help mitigate the number of wrong-way collisions, states like Michigan have implemented warning systems along off-ramps, hoping to get the wrong-way driver’s attention before it is too late.