YUMA, Arizona. According to Fortune , in the last 9 years, several billion people have safely flown in U.S. planes with no incident. Yet, this week, that streak came to an end when a woman was killed on a Southwest Flight after engine failure. The story is horrifying. Passengers told stories about how the woman was sucked out of the window. Others talked about how they wrote messages to their family and loved ones, saying goodbye. Yet, others posted videos of the experience online. It isn’t clear what happened to cause the accident, but one thing is certain: it still remains safer to fly than to drive.
Why then, will many people suddenly feel more nervous if they are flying this week?
The statistics are clear. Every year, over 30,000 people die in car accidents. When you compare this to the one tragic fatality on a plane we saw this week, one wonders why people still get nervous while flying, but don’t think twice when they pull into traffic.
According to Wired , humans are pretty bad at assessing risk because we use two different parts of our brain to determine risk. Our amygdala is the older part of the brain and it provides us with a faster emotional response to a situation, while the neocortex allows us to analyze and assess risk. Yet, even when we know that something is safe thanks to our neocortex, it can be hard to get the amygdala to understand the data that allows us to reach this conclusion.
So, if you’ve never been in a car accident due to texting and driving, it might not be scary to pick up your phone while you’re behind the wheel. But, if all you hear about airplanes in the news are scary stories about people dying in freak accidents, your emotional brain is triggered and can link airplanes to terrible events. Car accidents, on the other hand, seldom get reported. But even when they do, these events don’t affect us as much because we ride cars every day without incident.
This may help explain why people are so likely to text and drive or to use their cell phones while driving. We may all know the statistics, but when our phones ring, they trigger the emotional side of our brain. It can be very difficult to override an emotional response, while you are also driving and already distracted while behind the wheel. Because of this, some safety experts have suggested that phones come with tools that will disable them while they are used in vehicles.
Car accidents can be incredibly traumatic because they are not expected. If you or a loved one has been hurt in a crash, consider reaching out to the personal injury lawyers at Schneider & Onofry, P.C. in Yuma, Arizona today. You and your family may be entitled to seek damages to cover your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering damages. Visit us at https://www.soarizonalaw.com/ to learn more about your rights and options.
Schneider & Onofry, P.C.
207 W. 2nd St.
Yuma, AZ 85364