Motorists who routinely travel West Virginia's iconic mountain highways may be dismayed to learn that in the first nine months of 2015, U.S. traffic deaths rose after numerous years of improvement. While the number of fatal accidents had dropped a total of 22 percent from 2000 to 2014 and decreased 1.4 percent in 2014 from the prior year, 2015 saw a significant reversal in the trend. In the first nine months of the year, approximately 26,000 people perished in wrecks, which represented an increase of 9.3 percent compared to the number of deaths during the same time frame in 2013.
West Virginia motorists may know that there are a number of companies that are working to create autonomous vehicles, with Google being one of the most prominent. Technologies are increasingly allowing computer systems in cars to handle driving, but organizations seeking to develop this technology have frequently run into problems because laws require a human being as the driver.
Some West Virginia residents may have heard about an accident in New Jersey involving an SUV and a small-sized school bus that left one dead and several injured. The collision took place during the morning hours of Feb. 4 in Bridgeton.
West Virginia Volvo drivers may be pleased to learn that the company has announced that by 2020, no one will be killed or seriously injured in their cars. The automaker plans to use a combination of existing safety technology and technology being developed for driverless cars to achieve this.
In 2016, the National Transportation Safety Board says that it wants to see a reduction in the number of fatigue-related crashes in America. It was one of 10 issues that were part of its Most Wanted list that was released on Jan. 13. Of those 10 priorities for the new year, four of them were also part of the list in 2015.
A West Virginia company is being sued in connection with a September 2013 traffic accident that left two children injured. The case is scheduled to be heard in the Wayne County Circuit Court. The parents of the injured children are seeking undisclosed punitive and compensatory damages.
As winter gets underway, West Virginia motorists need to be aware of the dangers they face when snow is light. Many pileups happen when it first begins snowing because people are unaware that the roads are slick yet.
West Virginians who are following the presidential primaries might be interested in learning about an accident that happened in New Hampshire. According to law enforcement and Secret Service sources, a fatal accident claimed one person and injured six, including four Secret Service agents.
West Virginia drivers who have heard that self-driving cars are supposed to make the roads much safer may be surprised to learn that these vehicles are currently involved in double the number of accidents than those driven by humans. So far, all the crashes involving driverless vehicles have been caused by human drivers. However, they have occurred because the self-driving cars are unable to make the small intuitive adjustments that a human could make.
For most people, driving is the riskiest thing that they will ever do. Although plane crashes may get more attention, the fatality rate is 300 times higher when traveling by car compared to traveling by plane. To make driving safer, there will need to be steps taken to either improve driver behavior or improve automobile technology. In the long run, there may be more to gain by improving technology.