Stay in your lane.
A lane departure crash is defined as a crash which occurs after a vehicle crosses an edge line or a center line, or otherwise leaves the traveled way. Crashes caused by inadvertent lane departure are generally very serious because they often happen at relatively high speeds.
In 2021, lane departure crashes resulted in 1,393 injuries and 57 fatalities.
Lane departure is the most common type of crash resulting in injuries in rural areas. The most harmful events for single-vehicle fatal lane departure crashes involved overturning/rolling over (75%) and collisions with fixed objects (15%) such as trees, utility/light poles, traffic signs and mailboxes.
What can you do?
- Avoid distractions by putting away your cell phone and other electronic gadgets.
- Stay awake; if you are sleepy, pull over and rest.
- Stay focused; do not space out or daydream while driving.
- Pay attention to the road and your driving rather than what's going on inside your vehicle.
- Drive sober - Officer suspected alcohol involvement was a contributing factor in nearly 40% of fatal lane departure crashes in North Dakota from 2017-2021.
- Obey speed limits and drive according to road conditions.
- Utilize your vehicle's Lane Departure Warning System.
- Scan far ahead and use your mirrors to check behind you for possible hazards that may require you to slow down or pull over safely.
If you find yourself being run off the edge of the road, there are things you can do to remain in control of the vehicle.