Car Accident Deaths Up to Record Levels

By Stewart Law Offices
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Fatal car accidents rise in 2021

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has just released a concerning report that shows the number of car accident deaths is way up in 2021. Early projections of the traffic fatality rates for the first half of 2021 show the largest six-month increase of traffic fatalities ever recorded in the Fatality Analysis Reporting System’s (FARS) history. The staggering number of fatal car crashes led to the United States Transportation Secretary referring to the number of rising traffic deaths as a “crisis” and urging immediate change and cooperation to alter course. Stewart Law Offices urges you to take notice of this concerning information and try to stay safe while driving.

Results from New Data on Car Accident Death Toll

The NHTSA released the Early Estimate of Motor Vehicle Traffic Fatalities for the First Half (January-June) of 2021 that revealed a startling number of innocent people have lost their lives during the first six months of 2021. According to this report, an estimated 20,160 people died in fatal car crashes in the first half of 2021.

One of the reasons why more traffic deaths may have occurred in the first half of 2021 than in 2020 is that more vehicle miles are being logged in 2021. During the first half of 2020, many businesses and establishments were closed during the COVID-19 crisis. Now that things have largely reopened, people are getting out more. Preliminary data reported by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) show that vehicle miles traveled in the first half of 2021 increased by approximately 173 billion miles, representing a 13-percent increase in the number of miles reported for the first half of 2020. With more people on the roads logging more miles, it is important to watch out for careless drivers and to drive defensively.

How This Compares to Previous Years’ Fatality Rates in Car Accidents

20,160 people are believed to have died in traffic accidents during the first six months of 2021, compared to the 17,020 people who tragically lost their lives in traffic accidents in the first half of 2020. This represents 3,140 more deaths or an 18.4-percent increase. Traffic fatalities in the first half of 2021 represent the highest number of traffic fatalities during the first half of the year since 2006 and the highest half-year percentage increase in the history of data recorded by FARS.

Additionally, the second quarter of 2021 compared to 2020 also represents a significant increase in the number of traffic fatalities. For the second quarter in 2021, there are a reported 11,225 fatalities, the highest number of traffic fatalities since 1990 and the highest quarterly percentage change of 23.1 percent in FARS data recorded history.

Possible Reasons for Increased Traffic Fatality Rates

The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly had a major impact on the recent spike in traffic fatalities. The NHTSA reported 38,680 deaths on U.S. roadways in 2020, the highest number of traffic deaths since 2007. And this was despite a 13-percent reduction in the total number of vehicle miles traveled due to widespread lockdowns and more people working from home.

The LA Times released an exposé in which they revealed that after decades of safety gains, the pandemic caused many U.S. drivers to become more reckless, more likely to speed, drink, use drugs, and leave their seat belts unbuckled. Safety experts believe that many drivers have adopted unsafe driving habits that may persist. They also believe that these driving behaviors are a reflection of widespread feelings of isolation, loneliness, and depression.
These statistics show that driving on roadways today can be very dangerous, especially if you encounter aggressive, impaired, or reckless drivers. We urge you to take all necessary safety precautions on the road and to drive defensively. If someone hurts you on the road, we will be there to help.

Need a Car Accident Lawyer? Stewart Law Offices Can Help

With more traffic accidents occurring on our roadways, the time may come when you need a personal injury lawyer’s assistance to help you recover after being injured in a car accident. Stewart Law Offices has car accident lawyers in North and South Carolina who are prepared to help you with your case. If you were injured in a car accident and would like to know more about your legal rights and options, contact Stewart Law Offices for your free consultation.

Getting in any kind of accident can change your life. We understand the stress, the medical bills, the time missed from work, and the pain and suffering that comes with serious injuries. That is why our dedicated personal injury lawyers in the Carolinas are here to help you move forward.