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The forgotten dangers of driving on rural roads

Driving is inherently a risky, if common and necessary, practice. What you may not realize is that it is just as dangerous traversing country roads as it is navigating the heavy, traffic-loaded roads of a major city.

According to WRDW news, Georgia and South Carolina share the distinction of having the most rural car accident fatalities in the nation. You may wonder what it is that puts rural roads on par with city ones in terms of risk.

1. Unexpected animals blocking the road

You are far more likely to run into a deer or cow in a rural area than in a city. Even if you avoid hitting the creature head-on, your rush to avoid colliding with local wildlife or escaped livestock may send you careening into a ditch or a tree.

2. An atmosphere of relaxation

The very thing that should make rural routes safer, long stretches of open road with little traffic, may increase the danger. Driving requires concentration, but you may become more relaxed and focus less because of the visible lack of traffic. You may find yourself tempted to do things like drink, speed or text while driving since it seems so much safer and there is less police presence, but these actions are still dangerous on rural roads.

3. Poor infrastructure

Rural roads may be in poorer condition compared to city ones due to less maintenance. There may be potholes, cracks and completely dirt sections. They also lack the lights of city roads, which means it is more dangerous to drive at night (especially given the fact that animals like deer come out more frequently at night).

There is danger when driving on rural roads just as there is danger when driving in cities. By continuing to be cautious and obey traffic laws, you reduce the risk to yourself, animals and other drivers.