98152-300x206In recent years, there have been a large number of car accidents caused by wrong way drivers in the greater Phoenix area. Wrong way collisions are particularly dangerous as they often result in vehicles colliding head-on causing substantial damage to the front of each vehicle and often resulting in injuries to the drivers and passengers involved.

A wrong way accident occurs when a vehicle is traveling in a direction against the legal flow of traffic and strikes another vehicle or a fixed object. According to the Federal Highway Traffic Administration, wrong way crashes result in 300 to 400 fatalities every year across the nation.

Many of these accidents occur on highways, expressways, and their associated exit and entrance ramps. Thus, the vehicles involved in these collisions are often traveling at high speeds resulting in potentially deadly impacts. If the accident occurs during peak travel times, there is potential for a significant number of vehicles being involved in the crash.

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316162-300x221By the end of 2016, the analysis of accident data from 2015 revealed a scary statistic. Pedestrian deaths had increased by almost ten percent from 2014 to 2015 across the country. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that 2015 saw the greatest number of pedestrians killed since 1996, with 5,376 deaths nationwide. So, while travel appears to be getting safer for most road users, pedestrians were one of the few categories to see an increase in fatalities.

In 2015, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation, there were 1,399 pedestrian crashes in the state, resulting in 161 pedestrian deaths and 1,169 injuries.

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123152-300x218Spring break is a wonderful time for students – a week long reprieve from classes to rest up or have some fun.

While spring break should be a joyful time, the months of March and April see an uptick in accident rates. In 2015, the Arizona Department of Transportation reported 10,521 accidents occurred in March putting the month fourth highest for crashes.

While many students may leave town for break, just as many stick around to soak in the Arizona sunshine. As students are not in class it is likely campuses will be filled with more pedestrians. Drivers should use extra caution around campus and be alert for students during times when the area is not typically busy.

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IMG_5987-300x169Every February the state of Arizona receives an influx of athletic talent. Fifteen major league baseball teams, which form the Cactus League, call Arizona home during the late winter months for spring training. The teams are based all around the state including Scottsdale, Phoenix, Mesa, Surprise, and Glendale. While spring training may appear to most to be a simple practice exercise, it is very big deal for baseball fans.

Throughout February and March fans can attend spring training games and observe practices. This gives fans an opportunity to get up close and personal with their favorite players, sneak a peek at what the new season holds, and escape the winter weather that plagues most of the country.

In 2016, the Cactus League teams sold 1.8 million tickets. The fact that the 2016 World Series Champions, the Chicago Cubs, hold their spring training in Arizona will likely increase these numbers for 2017. While this flood of tourism is very exciting for the state, increasing revenue and helping the economy, it can also contribute to an higher rate of motor vehicle accidents.

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112116-300x225Phoenix, Arizona, is home thirty school districts, which includes 325 public schools and over 200 charter and private schools. This means every morning and every afternoon countless children make their way to and from school. Thus, it is important for all residents to be aware of transportation dangers to ensure everyone on the road stays safe.

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516162-300x296The Valley of the Sun is known around the country for its beautiful landscape. The mountain backdrop, thirty miles of paved bike paths, and hundreds of miles of mountain bike trails make the Phoenix area one of the country’s prime destinations for bicyclists.

In fact, Arizona State University, located in Tempe, is ranked as one of the country’s top twenty bicycle friendly universities. ASU reports that 15,000 students use bicycles as transportation to and from campus everyday. The University is also home to one of the largest cycling clubs that provides a forum for all types bicycle riders and hosts various cycling races for students. The club participates in cycling competitions around the nation.

Tempe itself is known as one of the most bike friendly cities in America, receiving a Gold-Level Bicycle-Friendly Community award in 2015. Tempe is home to 175 miles of bikeways and has worked hard over recent years to provide safe bike lanes throughout urban areas to promote bicycling as a form of transportation in the city.

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82715(2)Alcohol creates a myriad response in the bodies of those who drink. From slowed response rates to a tiredness that can onset quickly, these effects may have a dramatic effect among drivers who have been drinking. For these reasons and others, driving while intoxicated is illegal in every state in the nation and doing so can lead to significant consequences. Drunk driving car accidents cause billions of dollars in damages annually and Arizona suffers from these instances every week.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, alcohol impairment is a factor in approximately 31 percent of all traffic-related fatalities. In 2014 alone, 9,967 people lost their lives in traffic collisions that involved alcohol impairment which is an average of more than 27 lives lost daily that year.

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112116If you drive in Arizona, you are charged with the knowledge of all applicable traffic laws and rules in the areas in which you drive. If you are like a typical driver in Maricopa County, odds are that you drive through a school zone on a regular basis. The rules of a school zone tend to vary from the rules applicable to the surrounding areas and if you fail to heed the school zone rules, you may face a traffic ticket, criminal charge, or even be responsible for causing an accident that harms a child.

School zones in the Phoenix area tend to be marked with a 15 mile per hour speed limit during morning and afternoon school hours. Drivers are required to slow their speeds, if necessary, before entering a marked school zone and must keep their speeds at or below the posted speed limit until after they exit the school zone. School zone speed limits tend to only be active during school days and therefore do not apply during marked hours on the weekends or over school breaks.

Crosswalks in school zones should be approached with extreme caution as drivers are required to stop if any pedestrian is present in the area. This means that even if an adult is entering a crosswalk on the other side of the street, a driver must stop before entering the crosswalk and may not proceed until the crosswalk is clear.

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31616(2)With the holidays quickly approaching and more families out shopping, It also puts them at risk of being involved in a serious pedestrian accident. Fortunately, there are certain steps that you can take to make sure that your child’s legal rights are protected if he or she is hurt in a wreck, some of the most important of which are listed below.

Call 911

The first thing you should do if you child is involved in an accident is call 911 so that police and emergency medical personnel are summoned to the scene. Doing so will ensure that your child receives medical treatment and that the driver is cited if he or she has broken any safety laws. If a traffic violation caused the crash, it may automatically entitle your child to compensation.