Rural roads feel safer than city streets. There is less congestion, less traffic, fewer pedestrians and more space. People feel relaxed and calm, whereas the city stresses them out.
However, the reality is that rural roads are typically more dangerous than city streets, at least when looking at statistics about accidents and fatalities. Why is this? What makes a road feel safer even though it is not?
One reason is that feeling of relaxation itself. Since people think they are safe, they take more chances. They break the speed limit. They drive recklessly. They know it’s less likely that they’ll see any police officers, so they take chances with risky behavior, and it leads to accidents.
Another major reason is that speed limits tend to be far higher. You can only go 25 miles per hour in the city, for instance, while you can go 55 miles per hour or faster in the country. Even though accidents do not happen as often on rural roads since there is less traffic, the crashes that do occur are more likely to result in fatalities or serious injuries simply because people are traveling far faster at the time of impact.
A lack of visibility can also play a role. City streets tend to have streetlights and heavy traffic, so it’s easy to see even at night. Driving after dark in remote parts of Montana means everything around you is pitch black, and you can only see what is illuminated by your headlights.
These are just three examples, but they really help illustrate the risks you face. If you get injured in an accident, make sure you understand your legal rights to compensation.