The Cassidy Law Firm Blog

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Fatal Motor Vehicle Accidents Push Accidental Death Rates to New Highs

What are the top causes of fatal car accidents?

For the first time, the National Safety Council has ranked accidental deaths as the third leading cause of death in the United States.  Previously, the top three causes of death were reported as heart disease, cancer, and chronic lower respiratory diseases, with accidents coming in fourth.  The NSC reports that over 161,000 people died in accidents in 2016.  Every second, an American is accidently injured somewhere across the country, with car accidents leading as the number one cause of accidental deaths.  Our New Jersey personal injury lawyers discuss the causes of fatal car accidents below.

Car Accidents On the Rise

In 2016, more than 40,000 people died in motor vehicle accidents.  This represents an increase of over 14 percent since 2014, which is the largest jump in the past 53 years.  The rise in fatal accidents is alarming as it comes at a time when car makers and the public are increasingly focused on traffic safety.  Automakers across the nation are attempting to create automated vehicles, while already some cars on the road offer semi-autonomous driving.  Despite these leaps in safe technology, people are dying in accidents at higher rates than in the past.  

This seeming disconnect between safer vehicle and more deaths begs the question, just why are fatal accidents on the rise?  To answer this problem, we consider the current leading causes of deadly car accidents:

  1. Not wearing a seatbelt:  Not wearing a seatbelt can easily elevate a serious accident to a fatal one.  More than half of all people who die in motor vehicle accidents were not wearing their seatbelt at the time of the accident, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  Despite laws in place requiring people buckle up, many adults and teens alike continue to forget their seatbelt.
  2. Speeding:  Speeding often leads to severe and potentially fatal car accidents.  The faster a vehicle is traveling at the time of the accident, the greater the chance for life threatening injuries.
  3. Distracted driving:  Distracted driving is a tremendous problem nationally, one that may only increase in the future with the advent of touchscreen systems on cars and ever evolving mobile technologies.  Drivers who are distracted can cause fatal car accidents in a matter of moments.

Anyone who has been injured in a car accident should consult with a personal injury lawyer right away.  Car accidents can lead to serious injuries and tremendous expenses.  Injured accident victims may be eligible to seek recovery for their medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.

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