In 2015, there were eight percent more car accident deaths in the United States than the number of fatalities over the course of 2014. The Hill reported the year-to-year rise in collision deaths was the biggest jump in car accident fatalities in more than 50 years. There were already 35,236 people killed in 2014, so the jump in 2015 meant there were 38,300 deaths in collisions in a single year in the United States.
Drivers need to be aware of the fact the roads are more dangerous. While there are many factors which explain the rise in collision deaths, the only thing that will change this dangerous trajectory is for drivers to begin exercising more caution. If motorists exercise reasonable care, El Paso car accidents can be avoided and lives can be saved.
Rising Car Accident Deaths Underscore the Need for Driver Safety
Safety advocates and transportation experts are urging Americans to view the high rate of car accident fatalities in 2015 as a wakeup call and as an alert they need to stop taking driving safety for granted. While cars have gotten a lot safer, driving is still one of the most dangerous activities most people do and car accidents remain one of the leading causes of death in the United States. This, in large part, is caused by unsafe behaviors on the part of motorists.
AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety conducted a study and found 87 percent of drivers had engaged in high risk behaviors like operating their vehicles while impaired by alcohol; driving while drowsy; driving while using a cell phone or otherwise distracted; being in a car without a seat belt; speeding; and running red lights.
Drivers often engage in these behaviors even if they know they shouldn't. For example, 70 percent of motorists who participated in the AAA survey admitted to using a cell phone as they were operating their vehicle... but among these same drivers, 80 percent acknowledged the dangers of distracted driving and commented they believed distracted driving was a bigger risk on the roads than it was just three years prior. Motorists who engage in high risk behaviors begin to feel more secure in their actions as accidents don't happen, and they erroneously begin to believe they won't be one of the motorists who causes a crash by engaging in high-risk behaviors.
While driving behavior is a big factor, The Hill indicates the rise in car accidents from 2014 to 2015 may, in part, have been attributed to more motorists on the road and to more people driving longer distances. Gas prices fell 28 percent between 2014 and 2015, meaning it became much more affordable to drive more frequently.
While the rising number of people on the road helps to explain why accidents happen, it is not acceptable that better economic conditions should always translate to more crashes. Gas prices are going to continue to fall in 2016 according to most economic indicators, which means the death rate this year could be even higher if drivers don't make a commitment to stop doing things which are dangerous and likely to lead to collisions occurring.