Illinois is moving to a new phase in an effort to reopen the economy. As shelter-in-place orders are lifted and more cars are on the road, however, we must not forget to do our part to prevent car accidents.
Unfortunately, some drivers thought that having fewer cars on the road this past couple of months gave them a license to speed and drive recklessly. As a result, in many areas around the country, despite overall accidents being down, fatalities have gone up. Fatal accidents in Connecticut are 40% higher than last year, even though traffic is down 50%. And in Minnesota, fatalities are twice what they were last year. Massachusetts, Louisiana, and Missouri are likewise reporting that fatality rates for car accidents have risen during the pandemic.
Speeding has always been a leading factor in car crash deaths and highway officials say it is a big contributor to the current increase in fatalities. In many parts of the country, speeding tickets for people driving 20-40 miles per hour over the speed limit are up from last year. Highway patrols in California alone issued 2500 tickets to drivers going over 100 miles per hour.