3 Reasons Why Accidents Increase in the Winter in Arizona

Why do accidents in Arizona increase the winter? The data from the Arizona Department of Transportation shows that it does. And you might even know why….

According to Arizona Department of Transportation, the peak month of all crashes in the state of Arizona in 2021 was – October. With the rest of Arizona’s fall & winter month’s August, September, November and December not far behind. 

As winter temperatures arrive in Arizona, Arizonans welcome some of the best weather in the United States for months. The state also welcomes seasonal visitors and residents from all over. 

Arizona tourism rates increase drastically during the winter months, especially when the Grand Canyon State hosts popular events like the Waste Management Phoenix Open, Barrett Jackson Car Auctions, and Cactus League Spring Training each year. Mix these seasonal visitors with seasonal residents – and it’s no wonder we see more accidents this time of year.

“Snowbirds” as the part-time residents are commonly called,  travel from many colder parts of the U.S and Canada to the Valley of the Sun to escape the brisk temperatures of other parts of the country starting in September. It’s said to pick up heavily in October as they settle in for sunshine the rest of the winter months. 

Year-round Arizona residents know the fall/winter months to be busier all around, so this may not be all too surprising with the longer wait times at favorite local restaurants, long lines at the local grocery store and more congested roadways, too.

We’ve gathered 3 reasons why Arizona auto accidents increase in the winter so you can be more aware of the challenges impacting Arizona roadways this time of year.

  1. Population. Whether it is Snowbirds flocking back to Phoenix for the winter months, students attending college or visitors and tourism traffic for one or many of our seasonal events. There’s just more people on the roadways. And crowding can lead to challenging driving conditions that could cause more accidents.
  2. Driving School… USA. With so many transplanted residents and visitors heavily concentrated during the winter months, it’s almost as if no one knows Arizona driving laws and unofficial procedures. Different speed and merging norms are the major roadblocks to a smooth flow of traffic. Speed differential can catch drivers by surprise and can cause rear-end accidents or cause drivers to crash when over correcting to avoid the slower driver.
  3. Distractions. And not just texting and driving, because that is dangerous any time of the year. But life distractions make Arizona roadways more dangerous, too.. The fall/winter months are a busy time of year with planning for the holidays, shopping, and added community events. The stress and distractions can keep Arizona drivers from being fully present on the road.

Now that you’ve read about some of the top reasons accidents increase in Arizona in the winter months, what do you think?