According to a new study by Science Daily, during the week of Spring Break, for various highways and warm climate communities, the rate of car crashes increases by 10%. This effectively meant 16 more auto-related deaths per year in Spring Break destinations. While this study didn’t find any additional sources of drunk driving related accidents, it was quick to stress that doesn’t mean the risk isn’t higher.
The flipside of the morbidity, however, is that typically these at risk communities also experience economic booms during the weeks of Spring Break. The study suggests refraining from altogether discouraging students from coming to their areas, but rather searching for effective ways to discourage or cut back on driving during Spring Break weeks.
Effective Ways to Avoid Collisions with Spring Breakers
Regardless of whether or not they are drunk driving, the increased traffic alone seriously contributes to the likelihood of accident. Florida, for example, had a record 26 million out of state visitors last year during the months of February and March, up from the 9 million the year previously. Most of those can be attributed to Spring Breakers. It isn’t simply an issue of drunk driving. The following are ways to cut back on your exposure to the harmful college masses during the weeks of Spring Break:
- Avoid staying out late, particularly in areas usually claimed by the incoming college students.
- If you must drive through party zones during the day or at night, practice highly cautious, alert driving.
- If you suspect someone is employing unsafe driving practices, or is drunk, call the police.
- If you are a local business in the “hot spot” area, encourage the incoming students to take a cab.
- Avoid “hot spot” locations altogether.
Ideally, warm climate/beach communities will begin to facilitate transportation for the incoming college masses, so that the two parties will be able to exist symbiotically, each benefiting from the weeks the students spent on vacation. Lastly, if you find yourself in an accident with a college student and think alcohol is to blame, contact your lawyer, as you may be able to successfully sue for personal injury.