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Fatal Traffic Accidents Up 20 Percent in California in First Six Months of 2015

Traffic accidents in the first six months of 2015 have been the deadliest on record since 2007 in California and most of the United States.

Cheaper gas prices and an improved economy has apparently taken a heavy toll on California and US roadways as the number of people killed in traffic accidents are up 20 percent in the Golden State and 14 percent in the nation overall, according to a preliminary report by the National Safety Council on the first six months of 2015.

Indeed, there were 18,630 people killed in the United States for the first six months of 2015 compared to 16,400 people in 2014, the report said. Here in California, 1,566 people died in 2015 during this six-month period, up 20 percent or 164 deaths over 1,302 people killed in 2014. Last year’s numbers were down by 6 percent over 2013 where 1,471 were killed in California traffic accidents.

Additionally, the number of people injured in crashes has increased by 30 percent over 2014. The financial burden of these traffic accidents is also up 24 percent to $152 billion through June 30, 2015 compared to the same period a year ago.

“The more we drive the more likely we are going to be involved in a traffic accident,” said Attorney James Johnson. “Taking steps to reduce your chances of being involved in a serious collision may help reduce your risk.”


On average, roughly a third of all fatal traffic accidents are caused by distracted drivers, about a third involve speed and another third have an intoxicated driver behind the wheel, according to statistics by the NSC.

Distracted driving continues to contribute to collisions and the NSC estimates that roughly 27 percent of all crashes can be attributed to cell phone use. There are steps you can take to prevent being tempted to use a cell phone. Put your cell phone out of reach when you are driving, put it on do not disturb before you get behind the wheel and make calls before you leave for your destination.

Speeding is one sure way to lose control of your vehicle and contributes to most rollover crashes and head-on collisions. A driver who is unable to control their vehicle may over-correct themselves or veer into oncoming traffic. To cut down on this happening, pay attention to posted speed limits as you drive, set speed control in your car or leave early for appointments so you are not in a hurry.

Drinking and driving is also a preventable type of traffic accident, but as discussed above it takes planning and will power to avoid the temptation. If you plan to drink, you should plan how you intend to get home afterwards. Even if you don’t have a plan, there are always taxi or Uber rides available to help you get home safely. Call a friend, stay where you are or wait until you are sober if you cannot afford to pay for a ride home.


There were 82 people killed in traffic accidents in 2013 in San Diego County. Roughly a quarter of those or 23 crashes involved drunken drivers and 36 of them were pedestrians. These traffic accidents affected far more than those involved in the crash. When someone is killed in a collision their loss is felt by their family, friends, classmates or coworkers, neighbors, acquaintances and more.

The financial impact may also create a burden on surviving dependents who are left to pick up the pieces in the aftermath. If you want answers to legal questions following a fatal or injury car accident or you want information about a potential wrongful death lawsuit, contact Johnson Attorneys Group at 800-235-6801 for a free consultation.

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