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Do you know how many people die each year because of wrong-way crashes in the United States? Based on a study by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), approximately 400 individuals die annually due to wrong-way driving. Back in 2012, the US news reports were full of stories related to errant driving of wrong-way drivers on America’s major highways. This is not just a media hype, but a harsh reality. So, if you are a victim of wrong-way crashes, do not hesitate to consult with a car accident injury doctor to initiate treatment.

According to a news report by the ABC News, most of the fatalities in a wrong-way accident result out of high-speed collisions, and happen head-on. Did you know that 22 percent of these accidents cause death, compared to other road rashes that constitute less than one percent? The NTSB estimates that 15 percent of these accidents can be associated with drunken driving or with drivers who are more than 70 years of age. Driving under the influence of alcohol causes 60 percent of wrong-way crashes. However, according to NTSB chairman, Deborah Hersman, such fatalities are completely avoidable. How? Here are five ways you can prevent such accidents.

1. Look Straight

When driving down the highway, look straight, look up and forward to scan the road ahead. Normally, people don’t look no further than a few hundred yards. Avoid doing so, and look forth. You can do so when the traffic is less on the road. It’s easy to look forward at least a quarter of a mile in light traffic conditions. You get enough time to see if there is danger ahead.

2. Swerve Right

The best way to avoid wrong-way drivers is by swerving to the right. Most of the drivers coming from the opposite side will try moving to the right once they are on the freeway, because they feel that it’s the slow lane. As they are probably impaired, they don’t like to get pulled over on account of speeding.

3. Be Quick to Decode the Colors

Be careful when seeing the road reflectors. If you notice yellow or white, it means that you are driving in the right direction. Most of the road reflectors use two colors, red and white. Be quick in understanding their significance. If you see red reflectors on the road, you are driving on the wrong side. Simply stop and turn around.

4. Wear Your Seatbelt

Most of the car accidents associated with wrong-way drivers are mainly side swipes and head-on collisions. Whether a victim survives or he manages to avoid injuries depends on the fact if he is wearing a seatbelt or not. When you see danger ahead, pull over immediately after avoiding a wrong-way driver. Inform 911 to report the gravity of the situation. Provideall information such as the vehicle description, license plate number, direction and location of travel.

5. Make Your Intentions Clear

Do you know why drivers keep to the wrong side of the road? That’s because they drive under the influence of sleeping pills or alcohol, lack mental alertness, or are new to driving. No matter what the reason is, make your intentions clear with the signal lights.

Auto accidents can happen anytime, and you need to be extremely careful when driving on high-traffic roads and highways. Keep these tips in mind to avoid wrong-side car crashes. However, if you or someone you know have been involved with wrong-way collisions, get in touch with a car accident injury doctor to get immediate treatment. Keep all medical bills, scan reports and prescriptions in place to support your personal injury claim on account of your pain, suffering or lost wages. As prevention is always better than cure, always obey the traffic rules and practice safe driving.

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