The More Cars There are on the Road, the More Accidents and Fatalities There are Also

The More Cars There are on the Road, the More Accidents and Fatalities There are Also

Printed in the November 24, 1967, issue of the Life Magazine and in the AF&G All Fun and Games website is a story which says that in 1895, when there were only two cars in the state of Ohio, the unfortunate event of these two cars colliding into each other occurred. Besides this story above, there are other very interesting facts about car accidents. Some of these say:

  • The first traffic fatality, wherein a man was killed by a car, occurred in in NYC 1899;
  • The first electric car, called the Baker Torpedo, was taken for a speed test 1n 1902. It went as fast as 80 mph before crashing and killing two spectators;
  • The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) conducted a study on car crashes. This study showed that at least 90% of the more than five million motor vehicle accidents occurring every year are due to driver error or driver fault which include drunk-driving (which is the leading cause of car accidents), reckless driving, overspeeding and distracted driving; and,
  • An analysis of fatal car crashes show almost consistently that the more cars there are on the road, the more accidents and fatalities there are also.

In 2015, 16.1 million cars and trucks were purchased in the U.S., adding to the 253 million already running on roads and highways. Today, cars are the most common form of land transportation. Though increase in the number of cars and trucks may signify economic growth, based on the last fact mentioned above, it would hint that there will be more motor vehicle crashes too.

Bad road behavior or driver error is not the only fault of drivers, though. Many of those who are at-fault in accidents are also guilty of not compensating their victims. As a result, besides causing their victims pain and suffering, victims are also made to suffer financially due to the cost of medical treatment and loss of wages.

To assure accident victims of the compensation they have a legal right to claim, a law was passed in 1925 which made carrying of auto liability insurance compulsory for drivers. The states of Massachusetts and Connecticut were the first states that adopted this law which, today, is known as the Financial Responsibility law; its aim is to help make sure that drivers, who cause accidents, have the financial capability to compensate victims for the damages and losses they suffer.

Though proving financial responsibility is a law in all 50 states in the U.S., not all states require the carrying of auto liability insurance. In New Hampshire, in lieu of an auto insurance, it is enough for drivers to either deposit security/money with the state treasurer or file an SR-22 . In the 49 states where auto liability insurance is mandated, drivers are required to purchase either a “tort” insurance policy or a “no-fault” insurance policy. The “tort” insurance policy in required in the thirty-eight states, called “tort” or “fault” states, while the “no-fault” insurance coverage is the policy required in 12 “no-fault” states (Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Utah) .

In “tort” or “fault” states, compensation to accident victims is paid by the at-fault driver’s insurance provider. If the compensation paid by the insurance firm does not fully cover the damages and losses suffered by the victim, then the victim may file a civil lawsuit against the at-fault driver for further claims. In “no-fault” states, drivers, who are involved in an accident, are paid by their own auto insurance providers, regardless of who was at fault in the accident.

After an accident, another problem injured victims are subjected to is dealing with insurance providers who are either slow in paying out valid insurance claims. Worse than this, however, are insurance firms refusing to pay, denying valid claims, or a claims adjuster pressuring a victim to accept a quick settlement that is unfair.

According to the Mokaram Law Firm, “Accidents can happen for countless reasons and many are unavoidable, but car accidents that are preventable by using common sense and courtesy are inexcusable. Victims of these accidents often will suffer through years of personal injuries and financial backlash for an accident they did not cause.” This is why it would be wise for injured victims to get in touch with a personal injury lawyer immediately after an accident as this may help them pursue the full amount of compensation they are entitled under the law, whether through a lawsuit or out-of-court settlement.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *