Iowa residents should know that, according to estimates from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2018 is the second year in a row to see a decline in roadway fatalities. In 2017, 37,133 people died in motor vehicle crashes, a 2% drop from the previous year. In 2018, the number was 36,750: about a 1% dip from 2017.
Iowa residents who have been injured as a result of another driver's negligence should consider the legal definition of negligence before deciding whether they want to pursue the incident in court. Negligence has one meaning in casual conversation and an entirely different legal meaning. For example, in conversation, negligence might simply mean that the driver was at fault for the accident. However, in order to prove legal negligence, the court must decide that the accident was the direct cause of a personal injury or loss.
Even when only a light rain is falling, Iowa drivers might be at greater risk on the road than they would be in clear weather. The Bulletin of the American Meteorology Society has published a study that reports that the risk of a fatal motor vehicle accident increased by 27 percent in a light rain.
Drunk driving can quickly have a big impact on anyone in Iowa who happens to be sharing the roadway with an impaired driver. This is one of the reasons why an auto manufacturer based in Sweden has announced plans to install in-car cameras and sensors on its vehicles starting in the early 2020s. The system that will be used is designed to spot signs of driver intoxication and impairment as well as act on what's detected.
Several automakers are racing to get their autonomous vehicles on roadways in Iowa and around the world by 2020. However, a series of deadly accidents involving self-driving vehicles in recent months has profoundly shaken public confidence in the technology. As a result, manufacturers are stepping up their testing techniques to bring autonomous technology up to speed and ensure public safety.
Iowa residents should know about a report released by Governors Highway Safety Association because it is concerned with a widespread issue: speeding. According to the report, nearly one in three traffic deaths every year are caused by excessive travel speed.
The results of a recent Insurance Institute for Highway Safety study suggest that cell phones are encouraging people in Iowa and around the country to engage in increasingly reckless behavior while behind the wheel. The study adds to the growing body of research about the addictive nature of electronic communications and the importance of cell phones in American life. The IIHS researchers reached their conclusions after observing how drivers in four Virginia communities used their cell phones in 2014 and 2018.
Many new cars sold in Iowa offer added features such as GPS navigation and calling through vehicle dashboards. A study by AAA has found that many of these features can pose as a distraction, which increases the risk of car accidents.
Drivers in Iowa may benefit from the protection that external airbags afford, but they should not hold their breath for it. Car parts manufacturers have yet to perfect the technology; still, they are clear about the benefits. The ZF Group has released new safety data showing that in the event of a side collision, external airbags could mitigate the severity of occupants' injuries by up to 40 percent.
Winter weather conditions in Iowa and across the United States can make driving dangerous. Slick roads from snow and ice as well as sudden blizzards can cause car accidents to occur. Learning how to navigate the roads during winter weather may help drivers and passengers arrive at their destinations safely.