Similar to states throughout the United States, South Dakota has its share of rural roads throughout the state. While not as busy as bustling highways and freeways, they still present deadly dangers for motor vehicle occupants
Regardless of where drivers are traveling, rural roads account for nearly 50 percent of fatal crashes. Sixty-nine percent of national road miles are based in rural areas and total more than six million miles. Based on a recent report from the Governors Highway Safety Association, those living near those roads account for 19 percent of the population.
A growing problem
From 2016 to 2020, 85,002 people lost their lives while navigating rural roads. The situation only worsened in 2021, with more increases based on initial data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Transportation experts cite higher speeds, narrow to no shoulders, limited (if any) lighting, and curves that create blind spots. They also note the pandemic trend of driving faster and more recklessly due to the reduced number of vehicles on all roads nationwide.
In addition, seat belt use was ignored by many. Drag racing and other risky motor vehicle activity only made bad situations that much worse. The problem is in search of a solution. Meanwhile, the growing number of fatalities is taking a toll.
Reckless driving on any type of road surface presents deadly dangers for the vehicle’s occupants and other people. Bad situations worsen when a driver is driving recklessly or under the influence. An experienced personal injury attorney can be the best option to hold negligent drivers accountable.