Every year the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the National Safety Council release statistics on automobile accidents. Here are ten of the most surprising car accident statistics:
- The increase in auto accident fatalities in 2016 from 2014, was the highest increase in five decades. The largest increase prior to this was an 8.1 percent increase between 1965 and 1966.
- The cost of the fatalities, medical expenses related to injuries and property damages associated with the 2016 auto accidents totaled a staggering $432.5 billion.
- Speed was a contributing factor to more than 9,000 auto accident deaths in 2015, and was a contributing factor in nearly a third of all traffic fatalities in 2014. In 2014, 36 percent of male drivers between the ages of 15 and 20 who were involved in a fatal auto accident were exceeding the speed limit at the time of the crash. As far as aggressive driving behaviors go, exceeding the speed limit continues to be the primary behavior in the aggressive driving category. Other types of aggressive driving behaviors include: following improperly, failure to use signals, failure to obey traffic signs and signals, failure to yield the right-of-way, passing where prohibited, improper or erratic lane changes, and tailgating.
- Impaired driving took the lives of more than 10,000 people in 2015, accounting for 29 percent of all fatal car collisions in the U.S.
- Running red lights takes the lives of more than 900 people every year, being responsible for another 2,000 plus injuries. About half of the deaths which occur from running red lights are for pedestrians who are hit by those running a red light.
- Fatigue has moved up quickly as a leading cause of traffic accidents, and more than a third of all drivers report having fallen asleep at the wheel at some point. It is estimated that about a fifth of all fatal crashes involve a drowsy driver. A 2013 survey conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that more than 28 percent of licensed drivers who are 16 or older admitted to driving (within the past 30 days) when they were so tired they could barely keep their eyes open. In fact, getting only 4-5 hours of sleep is considered just as dangerous as having a blood alcohol concentration equal to or slightly above the legal limit in the U.S.
- Distracted driving activities which take a driver’s attention off the road, include talking on a cellphone, texting on a cellphone, eating, talking to other passengers, turning around to monitor the children in the backseat and fiddling with the radio or GPS. Distracted driving contributes to at least ten percent of all fatal crashes, and 15 percent of all crashes resulting in serious injury—and probably more, since few drivers want to admit to being distracted.
- Following a law in California which prohibited drivers from using a handheld cellphone, traffic fatalities fell 22 percent in the two years following the enactment of the law, and deaths specifically attributed to cell phone use fell nearly 50 percent.
- Hit-and-run crashes have been rising since 2009, with the number of fatal hit-and-run crashes rising steadily. According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, about 60 percent of all these hit-and-run fatalities were among pedestrians.
- Rollover crashes, one of the deadliest types of car crash, account for nearly a third of all occupant fatalities, with light utility trucks having the highest number of rollover crashes.
Contact Our Colorado Springs Car Accident Attorneys
If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident that was caused by another person’s recklessness or carelessness, our attorneys can help. At the Rector Law Firm, our Colorado Springs car accident attorneys have the experience and the resources to build a case that is designed to obtain maximum compensation for our clients. Call us today at 719-578-1106 for a free initial consultation and review of your case.