Everyone at Hardee, Massey & Blodgett, LLP agrees, the rural roadways of eastern North Carolina are beautiful during every season. There isn’t a better experience than driving our winding roads and looking out at the countryside without seeing buildings and the other obstructions you find in the city. But we want to remind you, rural roads in our state can be dangerous so we encourage everyone to be aware of their surroundings when they get behind the wheel.
In North Carolina, nearly 65% of traffic fatalities occurred on rural roadways. The only two states where rural roads were deadlier were Texas and California. Whether you drive in the country frequently or occasionally, you need to understand why rural roads often are hazardous to motorists.
An apparent lack of danger
When driving in a city you expect to encounter things like buses, trains, pedestrians and more cars. You may not see these things on long stretches of our rural roadways. Although rural roads may not be as busy as city streets, you can be involved in an accident with a car you do not expect to see. You shouldn’t let the perceived lack of danger lull you into a false sense of security, you should always be aware of your surroundings.
Lack of road signs
Some rural roadways, intersections, and curves may not have proper signage. Because of this, you and others around you, may not be paying attention and this can cause an accident. One way you can prevent accidents is to reduce your speed when you are driving on unfamiliar roads and in unfamiliar places.
Uneven surfaces, loose gravel
Most city streets are made up of concrete and asphalt, while rural roadways may be made up of gravel or dirt. Cars react differently on loose or uneven surfaces than they do on paved city roads. Meaning, you, or another driver on the road, could lose control of your vehicle when trying to drive on unpaved surfaces.
If you live in a rural area, you probably have to drive greater distances to get to work or for shopping. Just because you drive further, doesn’t mean you want to have a car wreck. By knowing why rural roadways can be more hazardous for drivers, you can plan to stay safe every time you get behind the wheel of your car.