Studies show that the color of your vehicle can predict your risk of a car accident, even if you remove the influence of weather and light conditions.
But many other factors can also affect your crash risk. Distractions, speeding, and intoxication can cause a driver to hit your car regardless of its color. These factors, rather than your car color, will determine whether you can seek compensation for your injuries.
How Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers Can Help After a Car Accident in St. Louis, MO
Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers was founded in 2010. Since then, our car accident attorneys in St. Louis, MO have earned some of the legal industry’s highest honors, including AV Preeminent ratings from Martindale-Hubbell and 10.0 Superb ratings from Avvo.
Over the past 12 years, our firm has recovered more than $100 million for accident victims across Missouri. We’ll put our 100+ years of combined experience to work for you if you’ve been hurt in a collision in St. Louis, MO.
If you retain our legal services, we’ll:
- Collect evidence and investigate every aspect of your car accident to build a strong case
- Calculate your economic and non-economic damages
- Negotiate with insurance companies and other opposing parties to get you fair compensation
- Represent you in legal proceedings if going to court is in your best interest
Regardless of the cause, car accidents can result in injuries that cause pain, anguish, and disability. Contact Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers for a free consultation to discuss the compensation you can seek for your car accident injuries.
How Common Are Crashes Where Car Color Affects the Risk?
According to statistics released by the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP), St. Louis had 15,049 traffic accidents in 2021. Of these, 285 involved pedestrians or bicyclists, and the color of the vehicle probably didn’t affect the crash. This number also included 1,989 single-vehicle crashes where color was not a factor.
That leaves 12,775 crashes where color could have played a role. Logically, color has a greater impact on crash risk when the driving conditions limit a driver’s vision.
Across Missouri, the MSHP data shows that 16.8% of crashes happen during the dark hours between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. Similarly, 37.2% of crashes occur in inclement weather, including cloudy, rainy, or foggy conditions.
Missouri doesn’t provide the raw data to know how much the crashes during darkness overlap with the crashes in inclement weather. Based on the MSHP data, one can only infer that poor visibility could have played a role in between 2,150 and 6,900 crashes.
Car color could have affected a driver’s reactions in these accidents.
Overview of Car Color and Crash Risk in St. Louis, Missouri
There have been two studies that have looked at car color and crash risk. Both used white as the control color and compared the relative crash risk of other colors. The authors then performed a statistical analysis to remove the effects of “confounders” like intoxication, poor weather, and slick roads.
Neither study took place in the U.S. However, the places studied are both first-world countries with developed roads. As such, it can be safely assumed that driving conditions in these countries are similar to those in the U.S.
The Australian Study
One study was conducted by Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. It looked at accident reports from 1987 through 2004 that included car color information, allowing researchers to track the colors that tended to influence car accidents.
Based on this research, the study concluded that five colors had a statistically significant effect on crash risk:
All five colors were linked to increased crash risk. Gray and silver had the greatest impact on crash risk, increasing it by 10% to 11%.
The New Zealand Study
The other study was conducted by the University of Auckland in New Zealand. Researchers reviewed accident reports from 1998 and 1999. Their review showed that three colors significantly increased crash risk, while two colors significantly reduced it.
Black, green, and brown nearly doubled the crash risk compared to white cars. By contrast, gray and silver had only half the crash risk of a white car. According to this study, gray and silver were the safest car colors.
Does Car Color Affect Crash Risk?
Car color probably affects crash risk in some way.
But there’s no way to reliably predict:
- Which colors affect crash risk
- The conditions under which color may play a role
- Whether a color increases or decreases crash risk based on said conditions
Since the two studies produced contradictory results, it’s possible that some colors increase crash risk under certain conditions and reduce it under others. Thus, silver might reduce crash risk at night when the color improves a car’s visibility but increase risk during the day when glare might make the vehicle less visible.
Schedule a Free Consultation With Our St. Louis Car Accident Lawyers
A car accident can happen anytime, regardless of your car’s color. Contact Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers to discuss your car crash and the compensation you can pursue for it.