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Are slow drivers an accident risk?

You hear a lot about how speeding drivers cause accidents. They take risks, they drive recklessly, and they're to blame for many crashes every year.

This is true; excessive speed does cause accidents. However, it's worth noting that this doesn't mean the exact opposite is the right solution. Experts note that slow drivers are also an accident risk.

In residential areas, these drivers could be a problem because other drivers may quickly turn a corner, for example, rear-ending a car they never knew was there. Even if they slam on the brakes to avoid the crash, they could be hit in turn by the next car in line.

On multi-lane roads and interstates, slow drivers can cause traffic congestion. This is especially a problem when they're in the left lane and they refuse to move to the right. Other drivers may then pass on the right, even though the roads are designed for left-hand passing, leading to confusion and more issues as they then catch up with slow drivers in the right lane.

There are four main types of drivers who tend to go too slowly: The elderly, those who just got their licenses, tourists, and distracted drivers.

The key to safety is for everyone to go with the flow of traffic. This keeps movement consistent and predictable. Don't assume that driving 20 miles per hour under the speed limit keeps you safer. It could just make a crash more likely.

If a slow driver causes a chain-reaction accident due to congestion on the road, and you're injured in the crash, you need to know if you have a right to compensation for lost wages, medical bills, and more.

Source: Esurance, "The slowdown lowdown: why slow driving can be dangerous," accessed Feb. 24, 2017

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