If you were to ask the average New Jersey driver when the most dangerous days on the road are, they would probably give you an answer that involves the winter months. After all, anyone who has lived through even a single New Jersey winter understands that blustery weather and slippery road conditions can spell disaster for drivers.
However, the reality of determining the most dangerous days to drive is more complicated than just looking at the weather. In order to determine what days are the most dangerous, it was necessary to collect data over a number of years and look at the average number of deaths. The results from an analysis of collision-related deaths will probably surprise you.
In fact, two of the five deadliest days in the year for drivers actually take place in the middle of the summer. In other words, when road conditions are at their best, you may incur the highest amount of risk for a severe or fatal collision.
Which days are the most dangerous for drivers?
The most pressing question on your mind is likely what days actually have the highest rate of fatalities for drivers. The answer is probably going to surprise you. From 2012 through 2016, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) tracked accident reports and fatalities.
They found that August 2 is the single deadliest day on the road each year. During the years that the IIHS collected data, an average of 101 people died on August 2 each year. Compare that with the second most deadly day, the Fourth of July. This day average 99 fatalities each year between 2012 and 2016.
October 25 takes the third place position, with an average of 98 deaths each year. May 3 and November 1 split the fourth place role with an average of 97 deaths annually.
No one understands why August 2 is so dangerous
There are certain days that people understand will have more precarious road conditions. Super Bowl Sunday, for example, will see many drunk drivers heading home after parties. The same is true of New Year's Eve.
Experts can't tell what exactly makes August 2 such a dangerous date. The popular theory is that there are higher than normal numbers of people vacationing at this time every year. More people commuting to beaches or cities on the New Jersey roads could lead to more collisions and deaths.
Regardless of what the cause is, you should stay aware of the dangers on the road on the Fourth of July, August 2 and every other day. Knowing the risks can help you make better decisions about when, where and how you commute, which can help reduce the chance of getting into a serious crash.