A few weeks ago, we wrote a post about bike and pedestrian safety in the United States. These two groups are vulnerable out on the road, and they have seen rising fatality numbers in the face of declining overall traffic fatalities.

But today we want to talk about motor vehicle accidents, which have been on the decline, generally, for the last decade. However, a recent trend over the last two years has suddenly cast a pall over the positive signs shown over the last decade.

In 2008, the number of deaths from motor vehicle accidents in the U.S. dropped below 40,000 for the year, and it hasn’t gone above 40,000 since. The only other year where there were fewer than 40,000 motor vehicle accident deaths, from 2008 all the way back to 1963, was 1992. In other words, having more than 40,000 deaths per year due to motor vehicle accidents was the standard. 

The last decade has seen marked improvements. But 2015 and 2016 saw huge increases in the number of motor vehicle accident deaths (35,485 and 37,461, respectively). There are many potential culprits for these increases. Could distracted driving be leading the charge? Are more people intoxicated out on the roads? Have road safety laws lapsed or failed to address new issues?

Whatever the case may be, this is a sobering reminder that the road is a risky place. When a negligent driver causes a crash, a personal injury lawsuit could hold them accountable.

Source: Wikipedia, “List of motor vehicle deaths in U.S. by year,” Accessed Jan. 19, 2018