Auto accident fatality rates increase significantly in 2015

Over the last decade, car accident fatality rates in New York and across the country have steadily declined, going from 42,708 deaths nationwide in 2006 to only 32,675 in 2014 thanks to increased seat belt usage, reductions in drunk driving, and technological improvements to cars. However, the rate has increased again by 7.2 percent for 2015, resulting in a total of 35,092 deaths. This is the largest increase in a single year since 1966.

According to officials, the increase in crash-related deaths can be attributed to an increase in driving on general. Thanks to factors like job growth and decreases in gas prices, people are driving more. From 2014 to 2015, the number of vehicle miles traveled increased by 3.5 percent, the largest increase in almost 25 years.

Increases in people driving have seemingly also been accompanied by increases in risky driving behaviors. Officials state that some of the primary causes of the increase in traffic fatalities include distracted driving, drunk driving or speeding, and passengers not wearing seat belts. These factors combined add up to approximately 90 percent of auto-related deaths.

It remains unclear whether 2016 will bring an increase or decrease in car accident fatalities. Those who have been injured in car accidents or those who have lost loved ones to car crashes may choose to seek help from personal injury lawyers. A lawyer may be able to help victims or their families to seek compensation for their losses by way of a personal injury lawsuit against the party at fault.

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