Driving To/From Polls May Be Hazardous To Your Health
The Journal of the American Medical Association (subscription required for full text) offers a study on car and pedestrian death rates on Presidential Election Days (E.D., believe it or not). When compared to the day before and day afterwards, there was a small but consistent rise every time we’ve elected a president since 1976, approximately 24 more deaths each E.D. This small (18% overall) fatality increase was seen in all parts of the country, across different age groups and genders, drivers and pedestrians, shorter vs. longer polling hours, and Democratic vs. Republican victor. The authors noted that Election Day was deadlier than Super Bowl Sunday, although did not compare these data to more notorious periods such as New Year’s Day and Independence. The Canadian researchers (takes an outsider to figure this out) still recommend participating in democracy, but to avoid speeding as well as alcohol and other distractions. (Drinking while voting is probably not a wise activity). As they say in Chicago, vote early, and vote often.