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New Study Says Gridlock May Save Your Life

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- The gridlock on some of Baltimore's busiest highways may be a headache but a new study released this week shows that it may save your life. The report ranks the best and worst states for highway safety.

Gigi Barnett explains why there's a silver lining for the heavy traffic on Maryland roads.

Maryland's gridlock---morning or night, it inches on for miles.

"'Bout ready to strangle myself," said driver Nancy Davis. "Or strangle other people."

But all that stopping and going may save your life.

A new study by the website "24-Seven Wall Street" looked at fatal crashes in each state. Maryland is ranked 39; only 11 other states are safer places to drive.

"That heavy traffic, it actually slows traffic down to lessen motor vehicle collisions, but it's not going to cancel out a motor vehicle collision  from happening," said Maryland State Police spokesperson DaVaughn Parker.

Montana is the most dangerous state to drive because it has fewer crowded highways and more rural roads, where speed limits tend to be ignored and head-on collisions are more likely. Another factor that's keeping Maryland roads safe: seatbelts. 91-percent of Maryland drivers buckle up.

"You put it on before I pull off. My kids know when we get into the car, Mommy doesn't pull off until your seat belt is on," said driver Tameshia Simms.

The safest state to drive in is Massachusetts, thanks to the traffic jams there, too.

Closer to our area, Virginia ranked number 35 on the list, not far from Maryland. Washington DC wasn't included in the study.

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