Did you know you can hire someone to get you out of a traffic jam in China? True story. #4 will make you wish we had that service in America! Check out these six fun and interesting fun facts about cars that will surprise you.
1. There are 253 million cars + trucks in the U.S.
There are more than one billion cars in the world. Roughly ¼ of them are located in the United States. China is catching up quickly. There are currently 154 million cars in China, which is 20 times higher than their 1987 total.
This is good news for the auto industry, but there are also safety concerns. China’s road capacity has only increased 3.4 times since 1987. Crowded roads have become so frustrating that you can hire someone to bail you out of a traffic jam in China (I wonder how many New Yorkers would pounce on that opportunity?).
2. The average American vehicle is 11.4 years old.
The Great Recession caused automobile sales to plunge by 36% from 2007 to 2009. Most Americans were too worried about losing their job to consider replacing their vehicle. This fear led to a bailout of Ford, GM, and Chrysler.
Very few drivers bought new cars during the economic downturn, which caused the average age of American vehicles to climb at a record-breaking pace. That average is projected to grow to 11.7% by 2019, but for better reasons – modern cars are better made and can thus outlast older models.
3. Men are two times more likely to die in a crash than women.
Statistics show men engage in risky driving behaviors more frequently than women, which naturally raises their fatality rate. Compared to women, men are three times more likely to:
Drive without wearing a seat-belt
Drive under the influence of alcohol and drugs
Men also speed, run stop signs, and fail to yield more frequently than women. In 2013, 23,127 men died in motor vehicle crashes. Compare that to 9,579 women. According to the US Department of Transportation, the number of male fatalities has been twice as high as the female total since 1975.
The next time you hear a man say, “Women are bad drivers,” send him a link to this blog(you’re welcome).
4. The average commuter spends 38 hours in traffic every year.
Roads have become so congested that the average American gets stuck in traffic for the equivalent of a work-week every year. It’s even worse in big cities, where commuters spend up to 67 hours in traffic. That’s a bummer, because research shows that people with the longest commutes have the lowest overall life satisfaction.
5. Car accidents are 23x more likely when the driver is distracted.
A study of truckers found that drivers who text and drive are 23 times more likely to wreck.Most drivers spent five seconds looking at their phone before a crash. That doesn’t sound like a big deal. It is.
You travel the length of a football field every five seconds when driving at a high speed. If a vehicle comes to a sudden stop while you’re not paying attention, you could smash into them before you know what happened.
Turn your phone off and put it in your glove compartment. Texting is less tempting when your phone is out of sight. If you have a teen driver, you need to be a positive example. Texting and driving is the leading cause of death in teen drivers.
6. More than half of Americans admit to singing and driving.
I know that last point was sad, so let’s close with a fun statistic.
According to DMEautomotive, at least 56% of motorists admit to singing in the car. Women (65%) are more likely to sing than men (49%). Personally, I feel women are just more likely to admit to it (you know you do it, too, guys!).
Annual Maintenance Procedures
Clean your battery posts Starting problems are a bummer any time of year. Regularly treating your battery to a cleaning can keep electrical gremlins at bay.
Inspect your spark plug wires Cracked up plug wires affect performance, gas mileage and general reliability. Be sure yours are in top shape.
Inspect your brakes Brakes are not a good area to cut corners. Be sure your brakes have enough meat left to get you through the season.
Check Your Engine Oil This should go without saying and should be done at least monthly. But in case you’re an amnesiac … you should also do an oil change!
Cold weather safety should be a concern for anybody living in a cold climate. These tips will give you the upper hand when Old Man Winter tries to put a chill on your winter travels.