Why Alaska Car Accidents Increase Over the Fourth of July

Fourth of July is right around the corner, which means the time is right for a reminder of how Alaska auto crashes increase considerably over holiday weekends. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration(NHTSA), Independence Day tops the list for the highest number of auto collision fatalities for a holiday period. Almost 600 people lose their lives in motor vehicle crashes over the July Fourth holiday, and this number may be higher due to the holiday falling on a weekend in 2022. Plus, thousands more victims will be injured because of negligent drivers.

Some of the reasons behind this spike in traffic collisions will probably be familiar, though you might be surprised at other causes that lead to an increase in crashes around the holidays. If you were injured or lost a loved one, it is essential to discuss your options with an Anchorage, AK car accident lawyer. You can also review the top contributing factors that make the Fourth of July a dangerous time to be on Alaska roads.

  • Driving Under the Influence:

    NHTSA data indicates that at least one motorist was drunk driving in almost 40% of all fatal holiday collisions. Because it falls in the summer when warm weather coaxes Alaskans outdoors, people are more likely to celebrate July Fourth with cookouts, parties, fireworks displays, and other celebrations – many of which feature adult beverages. Alcohol has multiple impacts upon a driver’s capabilities, affecting reaction time, cognitive abilities, physical abilities, and decision-making.

  • Holiday Traffic:

    After years where some celebrations were curtailed, more people are expected to travel and get out to see family and friends this Fourth of July. The increase in traffic volume and congestion can lead to accidents, especially in more populated areas like Anchorage. NHTSA also noted that motorists are more likely to speed over holiday periods, part of the reason the fatalities rate is 17% higher as compared to non-holiday days.

  • Up to 17 Hours of Daylight:

    Independence Day falls at a time of year when the sun is up for around 17 hours in Anchorage, and there is 24 hours of daylight in far northern parts of Alaska. There are many explanations behind the phenomenon, but the fact is that people are simply more active when the sun shines. Their activities further increase traffic on roads that are already experiencing higher traffic.

  • School Breaks:

    Kids are out of school until fall, which impacts traffic levels even for those that do not drive. For those that are driving age, keep in mind that June through August encompasses the “100 Deadliest Days.” New motorists aged 16-17 years old are three times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than adults.

You Can Rely on a Skilled Alaska Auto Crash Attorney

It is possible to be involved in a car accident any time of year, but these are a few reasons why the risk of collisions is higher around July Fourth. For more information on your legal remedies after a motor vehicle collision, please contactPower & Power Law to set up a free consultation at our Anchorage offices.