Every time we sit behind the wheel of a car, we are trusting ourselves and those around us to drive safely. Most of the time, everything goes fine. But sometimes, the worst happens… and it happens more than we’d all like.
To avoid these situations, it helps to truly understand the dangers so that you can internalize how safe you really need to be. To that end, we’ve compiled a list of car accident facts you should know about.
1. Global Car Accident Fatalities
On a global scale, there are 1.3 million car accident fatalities every year. In the U.S. alone, there were 40,000 traffic fatalities. This may not sound like much considering how many people drive every day, but this number has jumped up 6% since 2015.
You also have to consider how many car accidents there are that don’t end in fatalities, which is considerably higher.
2. The Deadliest Hours
In the U.S., the most dangerous time to be driving is on Saturdays from midnight to 3:00am. During that time, there were over 1,000 fatalities. This is 1/40th of all traffic fatalities in the U.S., even though that time period is just 1% of the total time in a week.
This makes this time period exceedingly dangerous to be driving in.
3. Distracted Driving
The invention of smartphones, car entertainment systems, and interactive GPS programs has made driving more dangerous. In 2016, 3,450 people died in traffic accidents as a result of distracted driving. This is a considerable portion of the total traffic fatalities.
This is no surprise considering the fact that more than around 480,000 drivers use their phones while they drive every day.
4. Drunk Driving
Despite the fact that we are constantly told that driving while drunk or driving under the influence is bad, many people still do it. In fact, 32% of all traffic accidents happen because someone was driving drunk. This makes it the majority cause of all traffic accidents, with speeding (at 31%) being a close second. After that is distracted driving (as we mentioned) and bad weather.
So don’t drink and drive, and try to avoid times when people might be doing it more frequently.
5. Drowsy Driving
Driving while fatigued—or “drowsy driving”—can be just as dangerous as drunk driving. It impairs you in the same way. Driving while tired makes your focus worse, impairs your reaction time, and, even worse, risks falling asleep at the wheel.
A 2009 report from Massachusetts on drowsy driving estimated that it causes almost 1.2 million crashes and 8,000 fatalities every year.
Now That You Know the Car Accident Facts…
You hopefully understand the risks involved with getting behind the wheel of a car. Driving a car makes life so much easier, but as these car accident facts demonstrate, it is not a privilege to be taken lightly.
If you ever get into a bad car accident, or if you have unfortunately already been in a car accident caused by a negligent driver, make sure to contact us. We can help you get the pay for damages you deserve.