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Traffic deaths top 40,000 for three years in a row

On Behalf of | Feb 20, 2019 | Car Accidents |

Though the number of traffic deaths declined by one percent from 2017 to 2018, the fact is that the years 2016 to 2018 each saw over 40,000 such deaths. To put it in perspective, traffic deaths have risen 14 percent from 2014 to 2018. This is according to the National Safety Council, which also notes that 4.5 million people were seriously injured in car crashes in 2018. Minnesota saw a 5.8 percent rise in traffic deaths from 2017 to 2018.

Maine, Kansas, New Jersey, Wyoming and Rhode Island, on the other hand, saw a 9.4 percent decline during that same period, so trends vary from state to state as well as from year to year. As for the causes of this upward trend, one factor is the growing number of in-dash infotainment systems. These, along with smartphones, which are also more and more common, pose a distraction for drivers.

While vehicle safety tech like automatic emergency braking is on the rise, it is present in too small a number of vehicles to make a great difference in statistics. Automakers like Volvo, Mercedes-Benz, and Subaru are developing pedestrian and bicyclist detection and avoidance systems, but these are still in their infancy.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety started to test the performance of AEB and pedestrian-detection tech in 2018. Current systems vary in their effectiveness.

Those who are injured in auto accidents should know that they can be eligible for compensation if they contributed to the accident to a certain degree. By filing a personal injury claim against the responsible driver’s insurance company, victims might be reimbursed for their medical bills, property damage, lost wages and other applicable losses. This is where a lawyer may come in handy. He or she might even negotiate for a fair settlement out of court.