The number of people killed in traffic accidents grew roughly 8 percent last year making it the largest year-over-year increase in 50 years, according to The National Safety Council.
The NSC reports there were an estimated 38,300 people killed and 4.4 million were seriously hurt on US roadways in 2015.
The states showing the largest growth in fatal crashes were Oregon with a 27 percent increase, followed by Georgia, up 22 percent, Florida, 18 percent, and South Carolina, 16 percent, the report said. Only 13 states showed a decrease in fatal crashes, namely the biggest drops were in New Mexico, down 20 percent, Kansas, down 7 percent, and New Jersey, 2 percent.
“We are all at risk for being injured or killed in a traffic accident, but these statistics should alarm anyone who uses the road because it shows that despite efforts to improve safety our driving has gotten worse,” said Attorney James Johnson.
Deborah A.P. Hersman, NSC president and CEO stated, “Driving a car is one of the riskiest activities any of us undertake in spite of decades of vehicle design improvements and traffic safety advancements. Engage your defensive driving skills and stay alert so we can reverse this trend in 2016.”
These statistics are estimated increases and may be off either way by less than 1 percent.
Why Are More People Being Killed in Crashes?
The troubling trend referred to as distracted driving may be only one component that has contributed to more deaths on US roadways. Other contributing factors thought to have affected the higher number of deaths last year included a stronger economy and lower unemployment rates. When people have more money in their pockets they are going out more often and workers are driving to and from their jobs on our roads. Additionally, gas prices have plummeted by roughly 28 percent in 2015 than the previous year. Cheaper gas has put many more drivers on the road and those already there have driven more miles.
What You Can Do to be Safe
Drivers can take steps to ensure their own safety as well as passengers by always wearing a seat belt, having children ride in car safety seats, avoiding distractions inside the car including cell phone use, never driving drowsy or drunk and keeping your vehicle well maintained.
If you have been hurt in a traffic accident involving a negligent driver, Johnson Attorneys Group may be able to help you through the legal process by offering a free consultation at 800-235-6801.
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