Two recent studies on traffic fatalities for the first half of 2016 reach the same conclusion. Deaths in vehicle accidents are increasing at an alarming rate despite the focus of the National Traffic Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA) and other organizations on preventing accidents. According to NHTSA, approximately 17,775 people died in motor vehicle crashes during this time period—a 10.4 percent increase from the year before.
The National Safety Council also recently released its results for the first half of 2016 and has findings similar to those of NHTSA. It estimates that 19,100 people were killed, a 9 percent increase in fatalities in the first half of 2016 as compared to 2015 and 18 percent higher than in 2014. In addition, 2.2 million people were seriously injured during the first half of 2016.
Take These Steps to Decrease Your Risk of Being an Accident Victim
NHTSA and the National Safety Council have not determined the cause of this spike in traffic fatalities other than noting that many more people are on the roads due to lower gas prices and a better economy. Still, these figures are incredibly disturbing given the public focus on driving safety and new technology to prevent crashes. It appears that drivers continue to make many driving errors that lead to tragic consequences for the victims of these accidents.
However, there are steps you can take to reduce the chances that you or a family member will be injured or killed in a vehicle accident. These include following common sense safety tips, such as:
- Make sure you and every passenger buckles up at all times.
- Designate a driver who will not consume alcohol or drugs to drive when you plan to drink, or arrange for alternative transportation home.
- Get plenty of sleep before driving and take breaks when you feel tired.
- Never use your cellphone when driving, even if you can do so hands-free. Insist your teen drivers and other family members follow this rule too.
- Monitor your teens’ driving habits as they are more likely to be injured or killed in crashes.
- Learn how your vehicle’s safety features work and use them. Too many drivers do not use this technology installed on their vehicles because they do not know to how to. Even worse, some people disengage these features.
Unfortunately, negligent drivers will continue to engage in unsafe driving practices like speeding, talking on a cellphone, texting, or driving while intoxicated. If you are the victim of one of these crashes, let Jones Wilson Injury Lawyers help you get the compensation you need and deserve. Fill out our online form today to schedule a free consultation.