A recent University of Alabama study shows the fifth worst day for crashes within the state in 2007 was the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. These results are in sharp contrast to UA’s CARE Research & Development Laboratory’s previous annual studies of holiday crashes with special emphasis on Thanksgiving.
Two factors likely contributed to the 585 crashes that occurred in Alabama on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, in contrast with the 196 crashes occurring on the Thanksgiving holiday itself, the study indicated.
First, during 2007 there seem to be fewer people taking off early in the week, indicated by significantly fewer crashes occurring on Monday and Tuesday of Thanksgiving week.
Second, further analysis indicated that in 2007 the weather was rainy on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, with almost 50 percent of the crashes occurring in rainy weather. Comparatively, less than 10 crashes occurred statewide in the rain on Monday and Tuesday.
Most of the crashes on this Wednesday occurred in the early afternoon and evening, with 50 percent of the crashes occurring between 1 to 6 p.m.
“This is definitely a time to be avoided on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, especially if bad weather is a possibility,” said Dr. Allen Parrish, professor of computer science and director of the CARE Research & Development Laboratory at UA.
“There is obviously a large concentration of people on the road who are not nearly as familiar with their routes as commuters,” said Parrish.
The best day of the week to be on the road is Thanksgiving Thursday. The actual holiday had about one-third of the crashes that occurred on Wednesday, a reflection that most road travelers have already reached their destinations at that point.
Since people’s return from their holiday trip is spread over the long weekend, there is no concentration on the return to cause anything as dangerous as the Wednesday pattern, according to the researchers.
Areas of the state showing significantly more crashes in 2007 than in previous (2003-2006) years include the Auburn, Decatur and Huntsville areas. Areas with the greatest reductions of crashes in 2007 include Mobile and Birmingham, as well as the rural areas of Baldwin and Jefferson Counties.
Parrish offered a few safety recommendations for road traveling during the holiday:
Be acquainted with traffic problem areas and avoid them
Do not drive while intoxicated, do not ride with others who are intoxicated, and avoid the obvious times and places where you might become the victim of drunken driving
Always wear your seat belt, regardless of how long the trip
Keep children properly restrained in the back seat
Watch the weather reports, and plan your trip accordingly
“Driving does not have to be dangerous,” said Parrish. “If you keep these safety basics in mind, you will cut your chances of being killed to a probability very close to zero.”
UA’s CARE Research & Development Laboratory, part of the computer science department, uses leading edge technologies to offer products and specialized software development services in a variety of areas, particularly traffic safety and law enforcement. Additionally, the CRDL routinely provides a variety of safety studies and planning documents, such as the Crash Facts Books and Highway Safety Plans.
Parrish can be contacted at 205/348-3749, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Stricklin can be contacted at 205/348-0991 or email@example.com.
Parrish | Newswise Science News
WAKE-UP provides new treatment option for stroke patients | International study led by UKE
17.05.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
First form of therapy for childhood dementia CLN2 developed
25.04.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics
Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...
The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...
A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.
The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...
Cardiovascular tissue engineering aims to treat heart disease with prostheses that grow and regenerate. Now, researchers from the University of Zurich, the Technical University Eindhoven and the Charité Berlin have successfully implanted regenerative heart valves, designed with the aid of computer simulations, into sheep for the first time.
Producing living tissue or organs based on human cells is one of the main research fields in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering, which involves growing...
A team of scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg investigated optically-induced superconductivity in the alkali-doped fulleride K3C60under high external pressures. This study allowed, on one hand, to uniquely assess the nature of the transient state as a superconducting phase. In addition, it unveiled the possibility to induce superconductivity in K3C60 at temperatures far above the -170 degrees Celsius hypothesized previously, and rather all the way to room temperature. The paper by Cantaluppi et al has been published in Nature Physics.
Unlike ordinary metals, superconductors have the unique capability of transporting electrical currents without any loss. Nowadays, their technological...
02.05.2018 | Event News
13.04.2018 | Event News
12.04.2018 | Event News
18.05.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering
18.05.2018 | Information Technology
18.05.2018 | Information Technology