Roseville Has Lower Gas Prices – May Mean More Auto Accidents
Reported gas prices around the city range from $1.99 to $2.99, as gas prices nationwide continue to drop. However, this drop has led to a corresponding increase in auto accidents across the country, which could mean that Roseville should brace for more car crashes.
ARCO and COSTCO report the lowest gas prices, at $1.99. Shell Gas Station has among the highest gas prices, at $2.99. While this might be great for drivers’ bank accounts in the short term, it could lead to more auto accidents, meaning drivers could suffer an increase in insurance costs, and at worse, serious personal injury.
Although Roseville is the largest city in Placer County, the city statistically has a low number of accidents. In 2013, there were no reported fatal accidents caused by drunk drivers, which is unusual for a metropolitan area. There were also 10 vehicles involved in fatal accidents.
However, in 2013, gas prices were much higher than they are now. Toward the end of 2014, crude oil prices began to drop, and in 2015, gas prices nationally took a nose dive. That trend appears to be continuing, as prices in the first month of 2016 have been below $2 across the US – a number drivers haven’t seen since 2009.
When more people can afford to drive, more people will drive. This means a statistical increase in traffic accidents and fatalities, of course, because there are more people to involve in accidents. What some people don’t consider, unfortunately, is the possibility that cheaper gas makes drivers more reckless when they drive, as well.
Cheap Gas and Dangerous Driving
An NPR interview in January last year, which examined calculations from South Dakota State University sociologist Guangquing Chi, discussed the startling relationship between low gas prices and more car crashes. He began his research looking at the correlation between road accident fatalities and drops in gasoline in Minnesota, and found that a decline of 20 cents in gasoline prices correlated with an additional 15 deadly car accidents per year. After looking at further data, Chi suggested that a drop of $2 across the US could mean 9,000 deaths in auto accidents each year.
Chi suggests that there is a lot more to the problem than just more people on the road. People tend to take separate trips when they can afford more gasoline, so instead of combining their after-work commute with grocery shopping, they perform the two tasks separately. That increases that individual driver’s chance of being involved in an automobile accident, simply because they spend more time on the road.
Evidence gathered from other studies suggests that people are simply worse drivers when they don’t have to worry as much about fuel efficiency. When gas prices are higher, people drive cautiously specifically to conserve fuel – driving at the posted speed limit of 70 miles per hour, for example, conserves more gas than driving faster. Hitting the brakes harder and accelerating faster also costs the vehicle more fuel.
It is important to keep these issues in mind when hitting the road to get cheap gas. Even if Roseville has been a safe city for many residents, with low gas prices means less vehicle safety for many reasons.
Roseville Auto Accident and Personal Injury Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Roseville Auto Accident Lawyer. If you or a member of your family has been seriously injured in a Roseville car accident caused by the negligence of another person, I can help. I’ve been helping accident victims obtain the compensation they deserve since 1982. Call me to discuss the serious injuries you, or a family member has at 916-921-6400. We can discuss what can be done about it. It is important to call right away after a car crash to preserve evidence and protect your legal rights. You may call me toll free at 800-404-5400 or contact me online for a FREE, friendly, no obligation consultation.
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