Reports of deadlier car crashes during the Covid lockdown seem to defy logic. Why would fewer drivers and less crowded roadways result in worse collisions?
The initial answers appear to be that less crowded roads led drivers to drive much faster, pay less attention to their whereabouts and more heed to their cellphones. Also the incidence of marijuana, alcohol and opioid use while driving soared.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has done extensive analysis comparing 2019 and 2020 ( pre-covid 2019 and covid 2020) and found that while overall miles driven plunged in 2020 by 13.2%, fatalities increased 7.2%.
Motorcyclists suffered the largest increase in mortality up 9%, while pedestrian deaths remained flat.
So, while traffic may get heavier and slower it also will likely get safer.