Highway Fatalities Spike | Distracted Driving | Washington, DC
After Seeing the Biggest Spike in Five Decades, Highway Fatalities Continue to Rise

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Highway deaths had been slowly falling in the United States for the past several decades. However, the year 2015 brought a sharp change in that trend. In 2015, traffic deaths increased by more than nine percent. This figure was alarming as it was the single largest annual increase in highway fatalities that our country has seen in almost fifty years. Recently, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released the first round of data for the first half of 2016, and it appears that things are continuing to get worse. According to the NHTSA, U.S. traffic deaths were up by 10.4 percent over the first six months of 2016. Overall, at least 17,000 Americans were killed in car accidents over that period, the most in nearly a decade.

Why are Accidents Rising?

At this time, highway safety officials believe that there are likely several different factors that have resulted in our roads becoming less safe. One factor is simply that Americans have been driving more over the last two years. This is because of a combination of an improving economy along with lower fuel prices. However, this only explains a fraction of the overall rise. For perspective, highway fatalities per vehicle mile traveled increased by approximately 8 percent over the first half of 2016. While that is less than the 10.4 percent total increase, it also shows a sharp rise.

Blame Distracted Driving

Many believe that distracted driving is the primary culprit behind the increase in serious car accidents. The majority of drivers currently have some sort of handheld device on them while they are behind the wheel. For example, a driver may be distracted by talking on a cell phone, texting, streaming video, using a smartphone app or even using their GPS system. Distracted driving is extremely dangerous. Far too many people believe that they can take their eyes off the road for just a second to get a quick glance at their cell phone. Unfortunately, this is unsafe; that one second could be the difference between stopping safely and a serious highway accident. To counteract the rise in car accidents, we need to do more to fight distracted driving.

Do You Need Legal Assistance?

The experienced car accident lawyers at Kamerow Law Firm, PLLC are standing by, ready to help. We will work aggressively to help you recover every penny that you rightfully deserve. If you or a family member has been seriously injured in a car crash, please call our Alexandria office today at 703-370-8088 to set up a free review of your claim. We serve victims throughout the region, including in Washington D.C., and Montgomery County, Maryland.