The 100 deadliest days spans between Memorial Day and Labor Day. This timeframe marks the deadliest times to be on roadways. Delaware is coming off of an extremely tragic Memorial Day weekend with several fatal accidents along Route One Coastal Highway from Rehoboth Beach, DE, all the way to Ocean City, MD.
The 100 deadliest days statistics are attributed mostly toward the younger demographic. In a 2015 study, Highway Safety Advocates found that for every 100,000 Americans under the age of 21, 1.2 people were killed in drunken driving fatalities. Not only are people 25 and under more likely to die in car crashes, they also have the highest rate of crash involvement resulting in the deaths of others, including passengers, pedestrians or occupants of other vehicles.
A more specific group within the young demographic is teens. The average summer in America claims 260 teens’ lives from motor vehicle accidents, an increase of 26% compared with the other months of the year. The percentage of teens who drink and drive has decreased by more than half in the past 25 years, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. However, 16-to-20- year-old drivers are 17 times more likely to die in a crash when they have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher.
The 100 deadliest days of traffic do not mean danger for just those behind the wheel. Our small Delaware beach towns like Rehoboth, Dewey, and Bethany all come with extreme amounts of pedestrian foot traffic. From those making their way to the beaches of Bethany, the boardwalk in Rehoboth, or the bar crawls of Dewey, the increased motor vehicle traffic results in additional pedestrian accidents. In 2008, 69,000 pedestrians were injured in traffic crashes and 4,378 were killed, according to the CDC. The CDC’s investigation revealed that one pedestrian was injured every eight minutes and one was killed every two hours.
Summer should be a fun-filled season to enjoy the weather and get away on vacations. Do not become a statistic of Delaware’s deadliest 100 days. Timing and preparation can help avoid traffic and accidents. Knowing alternative routes may add mileage, but could potentially be a safer trip. Plan out your best travel options prior to departure, and have alternative routes to avoid traffic completely. If you are ever involved in an accident on Route One during these 100 days, contact an attorney to understand your rights.