The concerning trend with fatal car accidents

Ideally, the number of fatalities on the road will always be declining. This can be difficult since the population is growing and there are always more drivers, but it is a trend that has held over time. Despite far lower traffic levels, for instance, there were more fatal accidents in the 1970s than there are today. Much of the reason for this is that cars have gotten a lot safer and technology has evolved.

That’s why the recent trend is so concerning because fatalities seem to be shifting direction and growing more common. This happened between 2019 and 2020, and it happened again between 2020 and 2021. It appears to be happening once again in 2022, although we will need to get to the end of the year and compile those statistics before it will be a guarantee.

Even so, what is it that has made car accident fatalities begin to climb when they have this long-term trend of declining? And why would that start happening at a time in which traffic levels in the United States had notably dropped?

Reckless driving

One thing that researchers found is that the lower traffic levels meant there wasn’t congestion on the roads. As a result, traffic could move more quickly. Some people used this to speed or drive recklessly far more often than they would have otherwise. As a result, those who were involved in accidents tended to have more severe injuries, or they were more likely to pass away.

Impaired driving

There has also been an increase in impaired driving. Much of this stems from alcohol use, but remember that drivers can also be impaired by things like marijuana or even prescription medications. Impairment is so dangerous because it can cause a safe driver to be involved in an accident.

Skipping the seat belt

Finally, although the exact reasons are not necessarily clear, there is evidence that people are using their seatbelts less often. You can find this in cases of fatalities where someone was not buckled in and may have survived the crash if they had been. This is just one more example of risky behaviors that have become more common.

If you’ve lost a loved one in a car accident that was caused by one of these dangerous drivers, then you need to know how to seek financial compensation for funeral costs, medical bills, lost earnings and much more.