The National Safety Council (NSC) tracks a myriad of car accident statistics year over year. The NSC reported an 8% increase in deaths in 2015 than in 2014. In addition, there was an increase of 9% of car accident related deaths in the first 6-months of 2016 than those same months in 2015. The last time car accident fatalities increased so dramatically and consistently was decades ago, when the average vehicle lacked numerous safety features. Understanding the cause of the car accidents can help prevent these accidents.
Likely Causes of the Rise Fatal Car Accident
- Driver distraction: The increasing importance of smartphones in America is also the cause for distracted driving. Fiddling with navigation, reading text messages, listening to music, and browsing apps are all significant driver distractions, especially to young drivers. Other widespread forms of distraction include talking to passengers, reading billboards, and eating behind the wheel.
- Overconfidence in technology: The improvement of safety technology is undoubtedly beneficial, but drivers must not make the assumption that their car’s systems will be able to prevent all accidents or warn them about all possible dangers. Hands-free mobile devices are also causing overconfidence in drivers, as many believe such devices represent a safe alternative to using a smartphone behind the wheel. NSC research indicates that hands-free mobile devices do not decrease a driver’s chance of getting into a car accident.
- Economic upturn: Lower gas prices across the nation and a general economic upturn for many Americans means they can drive more often and go further distances. An increase in drivers on the highways will, logically, also increase the likelihood of an accident, even if everyone drives responsibly.
The Chicago Tribune posted an article earlier this year that sheds more light on some of these issues; click here to view it. If you need help after a car accident, Rouda Feder Tietjen & McGuinn and our San Francisco personal injury attorneys can be of assistance. Email us today or call 415.940.7176 to learn about our legal services and your rights.