Traffic Deaths Up Sharply in First Six Months of 2015
Posted on behalf of Harbin & Burnett on Aug 26, 2015 in Auto Accidents
In the first six months of 2015, the number of traffic deaths in the United States rose 14 percent.
Car crash injuries also increased by one third, according to the National Safety Council (NSC). If this alarming trend continues for the remainder of the year, traffic-related deaths in 2015 will exceed 40,000, which has not occurred since 2007.
The NSC has stated that approximately 19,000 traffic fatalities occurred through June 2015. This figure is especially alarming as it does not include July and August, which are both historically high for automobile accident deaths.
Americans have been steadily driving more miles over the last 15 months, according to the Transportation Department.
A record 1.26 trillion miles were driven from January to May of 2015. Lower gas prices and a better economy have been thought to contribute to the rise in driving.
With the average increase in vehicle mileage at 3.4 percent, the 14 percent increase in traffic deaths is much higher than what could have been expected to result from an increase in travel.
Increasing traffic deaths could be attributed to a number of factors.
- Many states have raised speed limits, which could be a factor in many fatal accidents.
- Today's drivers are increasingly distracted by cell phones, electronics, and other passengers, leading to a high instance of accidents caused by distracted driving; approximately 25 percent of all accidents, fatal and those only causing injury or property damage, can be attributed to distracted driving.
- Despite the increase in traffic deaths, statistics are improving in some areas. Teen deaths have decreased and there has been a rise in seatbelt usage. Drunk driving deaths once accounted for 50 percent of all accident fatalities; now, it amounts to only 30 percent of fatalities.
No matter the cause, all traffic deaths are tragic. Our auto accident attorneys understand the devastation they cause, and are committed to helping families successfully recover the compensation they deserve.