American drivers took more risks behind the wheel when they returned to the road last year after the pandemic layoff, according to a new survey by AAA.
The report predicts a 10.5% increase in road traffic deaths in 2021, with 42,915 deaths, a 16-year high.
According to the survey, 7.3 percent of drivers said they drove when they thought they were over the alcohol limit, up from 23.3 percent in 2020.
Self-reported driving within an hour of using cannabis also increased by 13.4 percent, with 5 percent of drivers admitting to doing so.
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Speeding 15 mph or more over the posted limit increased by 12.4 percent, running a red light by 10.1 percent, and aggressive driving, including rapid lane changes and rear-ending, by 7.5 percent.
After several years of declines, 6.8% more drivers said they used handheld devices while driving, even though 92% knew it was very or very dangerous.
“The privilege of driving comes with a great responsibility that some motorists don’t take seriously,” said Jake Nelson, AAA director of traffic safety advocacy and research.
“Fortunately, we know that reinforcing safe behavior with someone we know can influence them to change, so on our next trip with a passenger, we’ll show them how to do it safely. Together, we can move closer to zero.” “The death of the movement”.
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AAA advises drivers to help themselves by putting their phones away, putting them on Do Not Disturb mode, always swerving, slowing down and making sure not to drive under the influence of any substances that could harm them.
“We need to be aware of the serious consequences of dangerous driving behavior and change course,” said Dr. David Young, executive director of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.