Taken as a whole, DC drivers have a reputation for being aggressive on the road. Studies of driver behaviors and attitudes support this reputation, too.
In the Capital recently reported on a study looking at the average number of years between car accidents for drivers in the 200 largest cities in the US. DC came in at #198 in the ranking, almost at the very bottom (Boston and Worcester, MA were worst). In DC, there’s an average of 5.1 years in between accidents.
Some good news is that, in the recent past, the average number of years between accidents used to be even lower in DC. However, 5.1 is still pretty bad. Just for comparison, the most highly ranked city – Fort Collins, CO – has an average of 14.2 years.
Effects on DC drivers
Given that they’re at high risk from accidents, DC drivers have many potential expenses to contend with. Their insurance rates are high. They face steep costs for car repair or replacement. And in the most serious accidents, they also need to cope with injuries. These range from mild whiplash or contusions to traumatic brain injuries. The costs of emergency treatment, hospital visits, surgeries, outpatient care and rehabilitation can be astronomical, and not everything is covered by insurance.
What’s more, in order to obtain compensation through a lawsuit, drivers and other road users (e.g. cyclists and pedestrians) generally have to prove that they weren’t at all at fault for an accident.
There are of course ways of lowering the risk of an accident. These include remaining attentive on the road, obeying traffic laws, and avoiding alcohol and other intoxicants. However, while preventative measures can certainly help reduce accident risk or lower the chances of fatal or serious injuries, you don’t have 100% control over what happens to you.
In the aftermath of a crash, it’s important to contact a DC accident attorney. Working with an attorney will improve your chances of obtaining the coverage you need from insurance companies and holding anyone responsible for the accident accountable.
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