While the Coronavirus shut down cities, calmed traffic across the United States, and caused overall accidents to decrease, another problem caused the number of fatal accidents to increase. Some drivers facing open roadways are giving to the temptation to speed. Several states reported a rise in the number of triple-digit speeding tickets being handed out.
The decreased traffic may have led to a decreased number of accidents, but the speeds at which the accidents were occurring had led to an increase in the fatality rate according to a Reuters analysis as the New York Times reports.
In New York City alone, the number of fatal crashes increased by 167% from the same time of year before in April. In Chicago, the increase was 292%, and the number of fatal crashed increased by 65% in Boston.
In Madrid, Spain, the increase in fatal collisions was 470% higher than the year previous.
Across the United States, the fatality rate increased 37% per mile driven in April.
The United States is not the only country seeing an increase in the number of speeding drivers. In Britain, police have documented instances of what they call driving at exceptionally high speeds of over 130 miles per hour.
Similar increases in speeding drivers have been noted in Australia, Belgium, and Denmark.
In New York, crashes plummeted in April 2020 to 4,103 from 16,808 a year ago. Fatal collisions decreased from 20 to 13, but the number of fatal collisions per 1,000 crashes increased from 1.2 per 1,000 to 3.2 per 1,000.