2015 is turning out to be the deadliest year on America’s roads in nearly a decade. Traffic fatalities have jumped more than 14% from 2014, according to a recent report released by the National Safety Council.
From January through June 2015, over 19,000 people were killed in traffic wrecks in the United States, on pace to eclipse the 40,000 mark, not reached since 2007. Additionally, over 2.2 million people have been seriously injured in the same time period, a nearly 30% spike, and property damages from auto accidents has grown to $152 billion, a 24% increase over the same period of time from 2014.
The rising toll of traffic fatalities and injuries comes as a surprise in a rising era of seat belt use, safer cars, and lower drunk driving totals. However, as National Safety Council CEO Deborah Hersman has observed, distracted driving incidents have soared to the point where over 25% of all accidents are believed to be cell phone related.
Jonathan Adkins of the Governors Highway Safety Administration says states have taken note of the troubling increases, noting that recent declines in unemployment and a stronger economy, combined with low gas prices, has led to more drivers on the road than in recent years.
As of August 17, 2015, the Kentucky State Police reported 433 deaths in Kentucky from car wrecks, the highest total since 2012 for the same period of time, when over 746 people died on Kentucky’s roads and highways.
Ultimately, these statistics show that despite the rise in seat belt use and safer cars, human error still has serious consequences on the country’s roadways, particularly the growth from distracted driving. If you are behind the wheel just know that text message, email, or even the GPS map should never take your eyes fro, the road. Nothing on a screen is worth putting the lives of yourself, your passengers, and others on the road at risk.
The Poppe Law Firm represents people all over the states of Kentucky and Indiana involved in personal injury cases, including serious car, truck, semi, and motorcycle wrecks, as well as business fraud, insurance bad faith, and professional malpractice. If you or someone you know was involved in a serious automobile accident, please contact us at (502) 895-3400.
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