How are we doing as a nation when it comes to road safety? This can be a difficult question to answer, because nationwide data on traffic crashes in any given year is usually not available until nearly a full year later. Compared to the speed at which most data can be collected and analyzed today, this seems painstakingly slow.
We do have access to preliminary data, however, and the trends are troubling. According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, traffic fatalities during the first half of 2015 increased by 8.1 percent, compared to the same period in 2014. While a certain percentage of traffic fatalities can be blamed on vehicle issues (like those leading to massive recalls), most car accidents are the result of predictably dangerous and preventable human behavior.
In 2014, some 32,675 people were killed in crashes involving motor vehicles. This includes pedestrian and bicyclist deaths. Of the total number of fatalities, approximately one-third were related to drunk driving – a rate that remains stubbornly high. Speeding played a role in approximately one-fourth of crash fatalities. Other behaviors leading to fatal crashes included distracted driving, drowsy driving, drugged driving and failure to wear a seatbelt.
Despite the spate of auto recalls in recent years, automobiles themselves are becoming safer, largely thanks to technological innovations. But the human element – chosen behaviors – continues to be the most dangerous hazard on our roads today.
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in an auto accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to receive compensation. Please contact the Cartwright Law firm today for a free case evaluation with an experienced personal injury attorney.