What Are the Worst States to Drive In?


Some states are worse than others when it comes to driving. While you might know the ins and outs of driving in your own state or at least your city or town, what if you’re traveling? You might want a heads’ up on the many things to watch for on the roadways of an unfamiliar location.

Some of the worst pitfalls of driving?

Of course, speed traps and high rates of tickets can be a bummer that ruins any vacation. High accident rates and treacherous driving conditions, as well as congestion and traffic, can all make for a problematic driving situation.

The following are some of the worst states to drive in, based on a variety of criteria.

The Dreaded Speed Traps

Livonia, Michigan, is somewhere you may never have heard of, but they have 27.9 speed traps for each of their 100,000 residents.

Speed traps can be a big challenge when you’re traveling and driving in unfamiliar territory. If you’re driving in your hometown or city, you might know where to anticipate speed traps, but you don’t have the same luxury during travel.

Speed traps are also tricky because you may honestly not know the speed limit, and if you’re on a road trip, there can be transitions you don’t even notice.

For example, you could find yourself in a small town where there are officers just waiting for travelers like you.

While a speed trap can pop up anywhere, some of the cities that are notorious for this include Livonia, Michigan, Orlando, Florida, and Las Vegas, Nevada.

Orlando is a terrible city for driving based on a range of criteria, and speed traps are among that list.

As far as the worst states?

According to Thrillist, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Michigan are places to be cautious of if you have a lead foot.

The Most Dangerous States

When you’re traveling, and you’re on the road, you want to be aware of not just the potential to get a ticket in a strange location, but also possible driving risks.

South Carolina is often ranked as one of the most dangerous states to drive in, and they have a rate of 17.8 billion roadway fatalities per billion miles traveled, which is 54% above the national average.

This rate is even higher in rural areas of South Carolina.

Next on the list?

Mississippi, with a fatality rate that’s 46% above the national average, especially on rural roads.

West Virginia is known for its scenic roadways, but there are 15.89 fatalities per billion miles traveled in the state, putting them more than 37% above the national average.

So what about the safest states to drive in?

Utah is well-known for its relatively safe roadways. Most of the state’s entire population is centered around Salt Lake City, and otherwise, the roadways are fairly empty. The biggest risks in the area are freezing conditions and wildlife.

Connecticut is another state where most of the population lives in urban areas, helping boost the safety of the roadways.

Other safe states for drivers are Michigan, Minnesota, Iowa, and Alaska.

The Worst Traffic

Traffic and roadway congestion can make traveling a nightmare. It can cause delays and temper flares.

It can also contribute to road rage, which is linked to around half of all fatal crashes.

The worst state for Traffic? Hawaii.

Hawaii has only around 4,400 miles of roadways, but there are more than a million registered vehicles in the state. This is coupled with the fact that there are a lot of tourists who aren’t familiar with the roads, and the state also happens to be ranked number one for road rage.

During rush hour, some states are worse than others for traffic as well. The places with the most rush-hour traffic congestion include Massachusetts, Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland, and California.

The places with the lowest percentages of rush hour traffic are Mississippi, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Iowa, and Idaho.

Finally, what about weather?

According to Wallet Hub, the states with the most days of precipitation that might affect driving conditions include New York, Vermont, West Virginia, Hawaii, and New Hampshire. The states with the fewest days of precipitation include California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, and Texas.

So does all this mean you should avoid any one of these states on your travels? Probably not, but if you know what to expect, you’re better prepared for your road trip so you can enjoy your time and reduce your stress.


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