Interstate speeds are much faster than speeds you’ll find in residential or commercial areas. This often makes them feel more dangerous because you’re moving so quickly, and young drivers especially feel like they really have to be alert and react promptly to any changes on the road. They may feel fine driving around town, but the idea of going on the interstate makes them nervous.
Even if you’ve gotten used to interstate driving and it no longer sparks this sort of reaction, you may find yourself wondering if there’s any truth to it. Is the interstate actually more dangerous than these other roads?
The interstates are some of the safest roads
Interestingly, far from being one of the most dangerous places you can drive, studies repeatedly find that the interstates are some of the safest roads in the country. For example, when the 2019 data was studied, it was found that there were 0.55 fatalities for every 100 million vehicle miles traveled. On any other type of road, the average was nearly three times that high, at 1.3 fatalities for every 100 million vehicle miles.
Of course, fatalities aren’t the only statistics that matter, but they do paint a picture of the sheer level of risk that you face. And it is clearly lower when you drive on the interstate.
The impact of speed
What the interstate does so well is that it prevents accidents from happening. Because everyone who enters or exits the highway has to use a dedicated onramp/offramp system, everything is controlled fairly well and traffic usually doesn’t cross in front of other vehicles. With everyone moving in the same direction, at relatively the same speed, accidents are uncommon.
With that said, if an accident does happen at higher speeds, there could be greater chances of serious injuries or fatalities in that accident. It is more dangerous to be moving quickly, but this is mitigated by the fact that the odds of actually being involved in an accident are much lower.
If you have been injured or if you’ve lost a loved one in an interstate accident, take the time to look into all of your rights to financial compensation.