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Combine this with a small number of horror films hitchhiking that is involving, along with high-profile murder victims whom’d been hitching, and you can get the now-dominant perception that hitchhiking is just too high-risk too take to.


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Combine this with a small number of horror films hitchhiking that is involving, along with high-profile murder victims whom’d been hitching, and you can get the now-dominant perception that hitchhiking is just too high-risk too take to.

But there is no evidence hitchhiking is perhaps all that dangerous

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In her own op-ed, Strand continues on to see that individuals’ve never had evidence that is good hitchhikers — or the motorists whom pick them up — are specially apt to be raped or murdered. One of many studies that are few this issue, carried out by the California Highway Patrol in 1974, concluded that “the outcomes . try not to show that hitchhikers are over represented in crimes or accidents beyond their figures.”

The research did discover that ladies had been greatly predisposed than guys become raped while hitchhiking, an undeniable fact that’s definitely today that is still true. But the majority murders, violent accidents, and rapes are committed in the home by a pal, member of the family, or acquaintance regarding the target. Based on the FBI, there have been simply 675 situations or murder or assault that is sexual the Interstates from 1979 to 2009 — rather than many of these involved hitchhikers.

The extensive concern with hitchhiking is probably inspired less by proof than by a set of other styles. Inside the research, Smith contends that even it seemed more dangerous because of the people still doing it as it became rarer.

a concern with strangers has blossomed in US society within the last few years

“those who do not have automobiles and so are wanting to hitchhike may be regarded as weirder, more deviant, or even more dangerous,” he claims. The more stigmatized it became, the less motorists who have been expected to pick somebody up. Less prepared motorists generated less individuals wanting to hitch, and also the volitile manner proceeded.

Our concern with hitchhiking may also squeeze into a far more basic fear of strangers who has blossomed in US culture within the last few years. Moms and dads instruct their kiddies to never speak to strangers, as an example — however in truth, the overwhelming greater part of youngster abductions are committed by household members.

In quite similar method, about 30,000 individuals die in automobile accidents each year, however the few dozen who will be murdered over the highways make hitchhiking a much palpable threat than driving. Our sensed fear of hitchhiking has surpassed the risk that is actual of. “There’s some sort of security bug that’s bought out in society,” Pisarski states. “we are far more reluctant to have interaction with strangers than before.”

Could hitchhiking become popular again through ride-sharing?

(Getty Images/Evelyn Hockstein/For The Washington Post)

Now, smart phones and apps that are location-based permitted visitors to share trips with strangers once again. It is made by them appear safer by giving details about them, frequently through their Facebook pages.

These apps just take a couple of forms that are different. There is CabCorner, Via, UberPool, and Lyft Line, which allow you to divide a cab or other compensated trip with individuals nearby whom require to access a comparable location. Hovee fits you with co-workers or other commuters whom share a similar path to work, and Carma Carpooling does exactly the same, but costs cyclists and will pay the motorist to offset gasoline expenses.

Additionally slugging, a lower-tech practice that first developed in DC through the 1970s and is nevertheless practiced by a couple of thousand individuals daily here plus in bay area. Individuals who would like a ride just fall into line at set places near highways, and drivers choose them up, mainly to enable them to drive in HOV lanes or avoid tolls that are paying

Sure, all of this is a bit distinctive from some body hitching a trip making use of their thumb out because of the relative region of the road. However it achieves exactly the same fundamental advantageous asset of placing otherwise empty seats in automobiles to make use of, reducing traffic.

“From a transport capability viewpoint, the greatest squandered resource we’ve is all those empty seats,” Pisarski claims. “such a thing we are able to do to assist fill those up is a confident thing.”

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