While most urban communities in Pennsylvania are designed by city planners, many of the rural roads are actually renovated farming trails that have historically been used as commercial transportation routes. The result is a combination of designed highways and traditional roadways that can create some difficult transportation issues.
Rural road perils
One of the primary issues with rural roads in Pennsylvania is that motorists driving standard passenger vehicles must share the roadway with flatbeds hauling timber and other commercial products. Shifted loads are more common than people realize, often resulting in auto accidents, and navigating curves when facing an 18-wheeler is difficult enough even without a trailer. In some cases, the result is an auto accident in a remote location. When passengers in smaller vehicles are injured in a location that is difficult for emergency technicians to reach, victims often perish.
A potential remedy
The 2021 infrastructure bill passed by Congress will begin an evaluation of the problem with a potential $300 million investment in rural roads across the nation. The initial study will address the need for straightening and widening of rural roads as well as additional recommended upgrades. Personal injury attorneys in Pennsylvania likely applaud this action by Congress that has been discussed for years but is now finally receiving real attention; it could result in better rural roads and safer routes across the state.
While the legislation will do little to impact the short-term rural road problem, it will assuredly help in the long term if construction is actually implemented following the study. All Pennsylvania drivers should be aware of the perilous conditions in rural parts of the state when driving, which can range from minimal road space to falling rock zones in mountainous regions.