In the United States, Americans spend over 1 million days hospitalized because of motor vehicle accidents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
As a leading cause of injuries in the United States, car accidents are devastating. They can lead to serious or catastrophic injuries and deaths, disability and incapacitation.
The CDC claims that there are steps that can be taken to help reduce the number of crashes that occur, such as:
- Encouraging states to use graduated driver licensing systems
- Requiring ignition interlock systems for those convicted of driving while impaired
- Setting up passenger restraint laws
Of course, while doing these things may help reduce the risk of collisions, they may not be enough to prevent them completely.
What’s the impact of auto collisions in the USA?
According to a report from May 17, 2022, U.S. traffic fatalities have reached their highest rates in the last 16 years based on the 43,000 deaths that occurred on the roads in 2021. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) stated that the total was a 10.5% jump in fatalities compared to 2020.
Part of the problem is that drivers just aren’t being safe. Major traffic violations, such as speeding and other risky driving behaviors, create a high risk of getting into crashes. Other factors that may have led to this jump include more out-of-state travel and less frequent use of seat belts.
Problematically, deaths in 2021 increased in almost all crash categories, according to the NHTSA. For example, crashes and fatalities involving large trucks were up 13%, and pedestrian deaths were up 13% as well.
What can you do if you’re involved in a traffic accident?
The reality is that the roads are more dangerous for people when they don’t follow the rules of the road or don’t consider the conditions. When you’re driving, stay alert. You may recognize that someone else isn’t paying attention or is about to make a mistake, and that could help you prevent a crash.
If you are hurt, then you need to call 911 and report the collision. Seek medical help, too. You can look into making a claim against the at-fault driver once you’re medically stable.