If You Live in These States, Don't Drive With Your Windows Down, Officials Warn

You should keep your windows up until after the Fourth of July if you live here.

After a serious car accident in Cincinnati, local officials are warning people that they need to drive with their windows up for a few weeks. The culprit behind the crash? Cicadas. As trillions of these insects, known as Brood X, emerge from the ground for the first time in 17 years, they've brought chaos with them. And yes, that includes at least one serious vehicular incident.

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A local police department recently warned residents of the dangers of driving with your windows down while the insects are still above ground. "While we like to have fun on social media from time to time, this is serious," the Cincinnati police wrote on Facebook on June 7, alongside a photo of a car that had struck a pole. "Cincinnati and our surrounding region has been invaded by Brood X of the Cicada Army. Historically each time they emerge, there have been several car crashes attributed to their presence. This year is no different."

The post included a stern warning: "Police in Cincinnati are warning drivers to roll up their windows during this year's cicada invasion after a man crashed his car when one of the insects flew into his face while he was driving Monday." The officials said the accident occurred when the driver went through a large swarm of cicadas, and one flew in through the window and hit him in the face, which shocked him and caused him to crash, totaling his car.

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"Remember to keep your windows rolled up until our little red-eyed friends are gone," the post concluded, also adding a hashtag that said, "nothing good happens with cicadas." The noisy pest will only be around for a few more weeks, after which you can cruise with your windows wide open. Michael Raupp, PhD, entomologist at the University of Maryland, told Baltimore's NBC affiliate WBAL-TV that by the Fourth of July, the Brood X cicadas will be gone.

The Cincinnati area isn't the only place getting hit with swarms of cicadas. There are 15 U.S. states experiencing a deluge of the crunchy-shelled bug, and residents should follow the Cincinnati police's advice and drive with their windows rolled up. Read on to find out if you need to change your driving habits.

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1
Delaware

cityscape photo of Wilmington, Delaware
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2
Georgia

historic district, savannah, Georgia, skyline
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3
Illinois

cityscape photo of downtown Aurora, Illinois
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4
Indiana

Indiana
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5
Kentucky

landscape photo of Frankfort, Kentucky at sunrise
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6
Maryland

Baltimore, Maryland
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7
Michigan

downtown Detroit Michigan
f11photo / Shutterstock

8
New Jersey

New Jersey
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9
New York

New York's Central Park
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10
North Carolina

The skyline of Charlotte, North Carolina with fall foliage in the foreground
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11
Ohio

Ohio
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12
Pennsylvania

city skyline of and boar crossing river in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
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13
Tennessee

cityscape photo of Nashville, Tennessee at dusk
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14
Virginia

ocean front and buildings in downtown Virginia Beach, Virginia at dusk
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15
West Virginia

city skyline and river in downtown Charleston, West Virginia at dusk
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Allie Hogan
Allie Hogan is a Brooklyn based writer currently working on her first novel. Read more
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