If anything positive can be said to have come out of the COVID-19 pandemic is that there are 75% fewer vehicle crashes and fatalities on California’s roads due to stay at home orders across the state. Because businesses were closed, events canceled, and tourism ground to a halt, California’s freeways, interstates, and streets were mostly empty. However, though the roads have been relatively safer due to the absence of vehicles, the wide-open road offers ample opportunity for drivers to drive at excessive speeds. Care should always be taken when driving, despite the appearance of safety due to clearer roads.
The Napa Valley Register reports that according to the California Highway Patrol, the traffic-data system that monitors traffic situations statewide shows that from March 19th and April 30th of this year, number of traffic accidents and crashes have decreased significantly by 75% from what they were at the same time in 2019.
The CHP report also indicates that there are 88 percent fewer deaths on California roads, and crashes resulting in injury are down some 62%.
One thing that has increased, however, is the number of drivers who were cited for driving at excessive speeds. The CHP reports that during the pandemic, roads were emptier than ever before. The law enforcement agency says a 46% increase in the number of tickets that were handed out during the pandemic shutdown. California Highway Patrol Officers issued some 2,738 citations to drivers who drove at speeds exceeding 100 miles per hour and more from March 19th to April 30th.