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How the Detroit Lions increase your chance of being in a Michigan car accident

Accident lawyer says testosterone increase in fans of winning sports teams causes more car accident fatalities

Proving once again that truth is stranger than fiction: in today’s Wall Street Journal there is an article about a new car accident study finding that close scores in games cause a sharp rise in car accident fatalities. But, what makes the study even more surprising is that this spike in car accidents, and especially car accident fatalities, only applies to fans of the winning team.

The study’s findings seem counter intuitive. You would think losing big games would cause more people to become involved in a car accident, especially a Michigan car accident, based upon the football in this state in the past few years. You would think, based upon I cannot even count how many, completely ruined Sunday afternoons I’ve spent watching the Detroit Lions over the last 35 years of my life, that the agony and despair of being a Detroit fan would lead to even more fatalities.

As an aside, I wonder just how many Detroit Lions fans have killed themselves for 4th quarter collapses over the past 35 years?

The study, released by researchers at North Carolina State and South Carolina, evaluated traffic deaths after 271 pro and college football and basketball games from 2001 to 2008, and found that the close games and nail-biters were much more likely to result in traffic accident deaths than blowouts were. And the rise in car accident deaths only applied to the fans of the winning team. No spike in car accident deaths among fans of the losing team or notable increase in car accident reports when games were not close in score.

The study concludes that the surge in testosterone levels in fans of the winning teams is what causes fans to drive faster and more aggressively, leading to the spike in car accident deaths.

This creates quite a challenge for Michigan car accident lawyers: how exactly do accident lawyers modify interrogatories and conduct discovery about surging testosterone?

Steven Gursten is recognized as one of the nation’s top accident lawyers handling serious car and truck accident lawsuits and automobile insurance No-Fault litigation. He routinely writes about the auto laws in Michigan, and is available for comment.

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