November 15, 2022

The COVID-19 pandemic had numerous ripple effects throughout society. Some are well-known, such as the shift to remote work.

Others are less known but perhaps more significant. For example, many don’t realize that traffic wrongful death and serious injuries resulting from traffic accidents have been on the rise since the lockdown days of the pandemic.

Experts have observed that, during lockdowns, drivers were more likely to engage in such behaviors as speeding, distracted driving, and intoxicated driving. This may have been because fewer vehicles were on the road during lockdowns. Perhaps this gave drivers the impression that they could disregard safety laws.

Unfortunately, although lockdowns are over, for some time, these trends continued. They’re finally beginning to reverse in some states. In Washington State, however, traffic fatalities have continued to occur at high levels throughout 2022.

Consider that during the first half of 2022, there were 327 traffic accident fatalities in Washington. That’s up from 249 during the same timeframe in 2021. It represents a 31% increase, the sixth-highest increase in traffic fatalities across all 50 states.

It’s unclear why traffic deaths are rising in Washington when they are plateauing or even decreasing elsewhere. According to Nick Vinzant, a senior research analyst at QuoteWizard (a service that offers car insurance quotes), right now, it’s early enough to say this might just be a fluke.

However, there are other potential explanations. For example, compared to many other states, it has taken Washington slightly longer to return to “normal” regarding people returning to work and other activities that put vehicles on the road. Thus, people might have had less time to shed their poor driving habits from the lockdown days and relearn how to drive safely. Next year, Washington’s traffic fatality trend might return to normal.

Staying Safe on Washington’s Roads

None of this is meant to deter you from driving. It’s simply meant to alert Washingtonians that our roads might not be as safe as they should be.

You can minimize your chances of being harmed in an auto accident by obeying the law, avoiding high-traffic areas when possible, and exercising caution when sharing the road with other motorists.

That said, even if you’re a responsible driver who takes all necessary steps to minimize your chances of causing an accident, you may be involved in a collision one day through no fault of your own. Statistics indicate that it may be even more likely now than it typically is.

While this will hopefully never happen, you should know your legal rights if it ever does. Washington State law allows car accident victims to seek financial compensation for their medical bills and other such losses when they’re harmed in collisions resulting from the negligence of others.

Speak with a lawyer if this has happened to you. At Snohomish County Injury Attorney, Kelby Derenick, a lawyer with more than a decade of experience, can help you pursue the compensation for which you may be eligible. Contact the firm online or call (360) 965-8251 for more information.

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If you have suffered injuries from an accident in Snohomish County, your next step after getting necessary medical care should be to contact a trusted attorney. Our law office is here to give you the peace of mind you need by speaking with someone who not only understands the ins and outs of personal injury law, but someone who cares about your situation. It all starts with scheduling a free consultation by calling us at (360) 965-8251 or filling out the form below.

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