Accidents happen. Just ask Willa Carson.
In my latest thriller, Night Justice, Judge Willa Carson is horrified when she hits a man with her car.
She jumps out to help, but it’s too late. He’s not breathing and she can’t revive him.
Famous Restaurant Owner’s Wife Kills Pedestrian is the top click bait headline for every citizen journalist with a smartphone video looking to make it big on social media.
But is it true?
Although many people fear flying, the statistics show that driving is actually much more dangerous. There are around 218 million registered drivers in the US. Of course, the more drivers there are on the road, the more likely it is that accidents and fatalities will occur.
2015 and 2016 were record-breaking years for automotive accidents. In 2015 alone there were 6.3 million collisions that resulted in property damages and injuries. The National Safety Council estimated that in both 2016 and 2017, fatalities resulting from automotive collisions reached 40,000.
Despite automakers working to improve car safety by implementing high-tech collision avoidance systems, automotive fatalities have continued to rise. Neglecting to wear seatbelts and speeding are believed to be the factors behind these high numbers. Distracted driving is also a huge culprit.
What to do if you witness an accident
- Carefully pull over to the side of the road and put on your hazard lights before calling 911. In most cases it is recommended that you stay inside your car, especially if you are on the side of a highway or busy road. Be extremely cautious if you choose to approach the collision. Do not go near vehicles that are smoking.
- Wait until the police have arrived so that you can provide a first-hand witness account.
- Afterward, write down what you remember in detail.
What to do if you are involved in an accident.
- If you are in an accident, pull over immediately (only where it is safe).
- Make sure that you have your headlights and hazards lights on. If you are on a highway do not remain in your vehicle as you may be hit by oncoming traffic.
- If there are any injuries, call the police or an ambulance. If there are no injuries, you should report it to authorities shortly afterward.
- Take photographs of the scene or draw a quick sketch to help you remember what happened.
To prevent the number of automotive fatalities each year, automakers and lawmakers are developing self-driving vehicles. The hope is that these vehicles will significantly lower the risks associated with driving.