Arizona hosts plenty of tourists, especially during the colder seasons. People from other states travel to Arizona to enjoy the beautiful landscapes or live in a warmer climate when the temperatures drop in the north. That influx of tourists and visitors is beneficial for the Arizona economy, but it does come with some trade-offs. Specifically, tourists and other visitors increase the likelihood of a major motor vehicle collision occurring.
Drivers who cross paths with tourists could very well end up hurt in a preventable collision. What common behaviors among vacationers and other visitors contribute to enhanced collision risk?
The choice to consume alcohol
When discussing plans for a vacation, more than half of those discussing vacation plans indicate that they intend to consume alcohol. They may drive after drinking when they usually wouldn’t do so while back home. While people in their home communities can make alternative arrangements for driving home after a party or a night out at a restaurant, visitors in an unfamiliar area usually do not have that luxury. They may feel like they have to drive after drinking so that they don’t leave their rental car somewhere dangerous.
Distraction related to sightseeing or navigation
People who do not know the local roads are more prone to distraction than others. They may need to frequently check GPS navigation software or update their location. Other times, they must monitor road signs and look at landmarks carefully to follow directions provided by someone they know. Not only are tourists often distracted at the wheel, but they may also engage in sudden, unpredictable maneuvers as they try to make a turn when approaching an intersection or a business.
Traveling often means spending hours at the wheel. That can make someone rather drowsy. They may experience highway hypnosis even if they try to stay awake and limit their drive time. Other times, difficulty sleeping well in unfamiliar environments and long travel hours may mean that someone has simply gone too long without rest to drive safely.
Tourists, like anyone else on the Arizona roads, are liable for any crashes they cause. People may need to pursue complex interstate insurance claims or prepare for a civil lawsuit when a visitor to Arizona causes a harmful crash.