New Mexico is one of 41 states that has increased speed limits since the 55 mph nationwide maximum speed was abolished in 1993. Drivers in the state can now travel at 75 mph on highways without worrying about a ticket, but increased speeds mean increased dangers. After studying traffic fatalities between 1993 and 2017, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety concluded that road deaths rise by 8.5% for every 5 mph increase in speed limits.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has reported an astounding 500% increase in fatal car crashes stemming from aggressive driving. While in 2006 there were 80 such crashes, there were 467 in 2015. Many drivers in New Mexico have probably encountered an aggressive driver, or perhaps they have fallen into a fit of road rage themselves.
Fatalities due to red-light running in New Mexico and across the United States have spiked to a 10-year-high. The report comes from data compiled by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. In 65% of the cases, the fatality victim had not been responsible for the crash.
Teens driving on New Mexico roads and others throughout the country may have a harder time dealing with distractions. Therefore, it may not be a good idea for young drivers to have passengers in their vehicles. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), teen drivers have a 44% greater chance of getting into an accident when they aren't riding alone. Therefore, parents shouldn't rely on their newly licensed drivers to provide rides for their siblings.
New Subaru Crosstrek owners in New Mexico have the distinction of owning 2019's safest car. However, in an odd twist, they also own the most crash-prone vehicle in America, according to a new report by insurance comparison website Insurify.
The New Mexico State Police are planning to launch a drunk driving crackdown during the upcoming Fourth of July holiday period. An NMSP spokesperson said that sobriety checkpoints would be set up at known drunk driving hotspots and saturation patrols will be deployed during peak periods. During the Independence Day celebrations in 2018, police in Carlsbad cited 117 motorists for driving while intoxicated.
Residents of New Mexico who are unsure about the benefits of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems, or ADAS, may want to consider the results of a study that J.D. Power conducted in 2018. More than half of new car owners claim that ADAS had helped them prevent a car crash within the first 90 days of owning their vehicle.
A leading car company is on a mission to make the roads safer for drivers in New Mexico and elsewhere in the country by using technology to proactively detect questionable driving behavior. The European automaker plans to include in-car cameras and sensors on its vehicles to look for signs of intoxication or distraction. The new system, which will be installed on vehicles starting in the early 2020s, goes a step further by allowing the car to intervene when necessary.
Many drivers in New Mexico, as elsewhere, use their phone or in-vehicle technology while behind the wheel. This can lead to accidents. The National Safety Council states that such accidents contribute to an average of 9 deaths and 100 injuries every day in the U.S. To combat the growing epidemic of distracted driving, the NSC has designated every April as Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
There are several steps that New Mexico car crash victims will want to take immediately after the incident, however shaken up they may be. Accurately documenting the collision can help the police write up their incident report and can clear the way for victims to file their insurance claims.