How to Stay Safe on Your Virginia Road Trip This Summer

In the United States, the most dangerous time to be on the road is during the summer. Every year, families from all across the country make plans to take a vacation or visit friends and family, completely unaware of the potential dangers that come with driving during this time of year. 

Why do more car accidents occur during the summer?

During the summertime, popular tourist destinations such as Virginia Beach, VA receive a steady stream of visitors. These places become crowded with sightseers, party-goers, music festival attendees, and beach lovers, many of whom consume copious amounts of alcohol. This increase in traffic combined with an increase in the amount of people on scooters, bicycles, and motorcycles creates a lot of potential hazards for vacationers and locals alike.  

A study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Association showed that the 100 days from Memorial Day to Labor Day are the most dangerous days of the year for drivers. 

If you were injured in a car accident, don’t endanger your chances of collecting financial compensation. Contact the Virginia Beach car accident lawyers at the personal injury law firm of Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp to schedule your free case review with one of our reputable attorneys. 

What Makes Driving During the Summer So Dangerous?

There are several different reasons that taking a road trip during the summer is more dangerous than any other time of the year. The leading causes of this include:  

Inexperienced Drivers

With school not in session, there are more teenage drivers on the roadway. This could pose a potential risk because younger drivers obviously have less experience and are more prone to making mistakes. Studies have shown that teenage drivers are more likely to use their cell phones while behind the wheel than their older counterparts and that about one in 10 fatal car accidents involving teens is attributed to distracted driving.  


A lot of road construction takes place during the summer, especially in northern states where it is much too cold to perform roadwork during the winter. 

On their best days, work zones are hazardous areas with high vehicle accident rates. Lane diversions, closed off-ramps, decreased speed limits, and work trucks can both confuse and distract even the most experienced of drivers. Always be mindful of your surroundings when you are in a work zone and observe the posted speed limit. 

Higher Rates of Intoxication

When people are on vacation, they are more likely to use drugs and alcohol. Research has shown that pool parties, beach parties, clubbing, and cookouts have all been associated with increased drug and alcohol use.

Sadly, there are a lot of drivers who are willing to take a risk and operate a motor vehicle even though they are under the influence. Every summer brings with it an uptick in fatal and injury-causing traffic accidents linked to driver intoxication in Virginia Beach and other popular vacation spots.  

Traffic Jams

Vehicle congestion is at its worst during the summer. Most people take family vacations in June, July, and August when their kids are out of school. An article in the New York Times stated that roughly 14 million domestic vacations are taken in the United States during the summer. More vehicles on the roadways increase everyone’s odds of being involved in an accident. 

How to Stay Safe on Your Summer Road Trip

There are some basic safety precautions that can help you stay safe when embarking on your summer road trip, such as:

  • Having your vehicle fully serviced beforehand in order to reduce the chances of a breakdown
  • Leave early than necessary so you are not tempted to speed  
  • Plan the route you will take ahead of time and program your GPS before you hit the road 
  • Take scheduled breaks so you can stretch your legs, and use the restroom. This will also allow you to eat, drink, and nap in a safe environment
  • Share the driving responsibilities with other people in your vehicle
  • Stay sober
  • Prevent distractions by putting your cell phone out of site and setting the ringer to silent

Do You Need a Virginia Car Accident Attorney?

The Virginia Beach personal injury law firm of Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp has been working for more than four decades to ensure that our clients achieve successful results in their motor vehicle accident cases. Give us a call at (833) 997-1774 and schedule your free case evaluation today. 

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