A wrong-way accident could have catastrophic consequences as it gives the driver in the other lane little to no opportunity to be able to adjust. No one in a car expects that a driver will be going the wrong direction. However, a recent National Transportation Safety Board study identified that while wrong way accidents are relatively rare, making up less than 3% of all fatal car accidents recorded in the United States, they are also the most dangerous because they frequently lead to a head-on collision.
The National Transportation Safety Board also identified that a majority of those wrong way drivers were drunk. Up to 70% of drivers involved in wrong-way crashes were impaired in one way or another. Those drivers aged 70 years and older were also over-represented in wrong-way collisions.
At that time, the National Transportation Safety Board recommended that additional lights and signs should be placed in all locations where wrong way accidents are likely to occur. Getting behind the wheel impaired, however, could have significant consequences even when proper lighting is provided. If you see a wrong-way driver, it is important to contact the authorities immediately. Your decision to let someone know about a person going the wrong way could just save someone’s life.