For many of us, cars are our main mode of transportation. Unfortunately, car accidents are a common occurrence and people are injured or lose their lives on the road. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, or NHTSA, found that in 2016, vehicle fatalities increased 5.6 percent from the previous year. While 2015 had 35,485 fatalities, 2016 had 37,461.
Nearly all groups of people who use the road, passenger vehicle occupants, truck drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists increased in fatalities in 2016.
Car accidents can be terrifying and result in serious injuries. If your injuries have prevented you from going to work or requires visits to the hospital or a specialist, you might have a lot of financial stress from the bills. Sometimes, people feel the financial pressure they return to work too early, and end up making their injuries worse. The car accident lawyers at Welsh & Welsh in Omaha, Nebraska might be able to help you get compensation for your injuries, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
How Has 2016 Been Worse Than Past Years?
Americans drive more miles each year, and people drive use cars, trucks, and motorcycles are aging. While car and truck fatalities went down in the percentage that makes up all highway fatalities, other areas have increased. Pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists are showing an increase in deaths.
- 6,000 pedestrians were killed last year.
- 840 bicyclists were killed last year, a 25-year high.
- Motorcyclists over the age of 40 make up half of the motorcycle fatalities.
The NHTSA recommends that drivers always stay on alert for pedestrians, especially where they’re not supposed to be. They also say to not pass a car that’s stopped at a crosswalk, because they could be waiting for a pedestrian to cross. Motorcyclists aren’t required to wear helmets in some states, which could prove fatal in high-speed accidents.
What Contributes to Car Accident Fatalities?
Common reasons for car accidents are still the same: speeding and not using seatbelts. These car accident causes are preventable. If more people had safe driving behaviors, there’s a better chance of reducing the fatality rate.
These reckless driving behaviors increase car accident fatalities:
- Not Using Seatbelts. In 2015, 10,428 people lost their lives in car accident because they weren’t wearing seatbelts. 2016 saw a 4.6 percent increase in fatalities from people not wearing their seatbelts. If you have a moment where you need to break suddenly on the highway and you’re not wearing a seatbelt, you run the risk of ejecting from the car.
- Distracted Driving. Our phones are a main distraction today because it’s how we communicate with people. When we hear our phone or see that we have a notification, we want to immediately check it and respond. But taking your eyes and concentration off the road greatly endangers you and the drivers around you. Fiddling with the radio or eating and driving also make you less of a safe driver.
- Aggressive Driving. Speeding and tailgating increase your chances of getting into an accident. You’re giving yourself less time to react to other drivers and will need more time to stop your car in an emergency.
- Drunk Driving. 218 people in Nebraska lost their lives in accidents that involved alcohol. Alcohol slows your reaction time, makes you tired, and affects your judgement.
Get in Touch with an Omaha Car Accident Lawyer
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, it’s important to know that you’re not alone. The lawyers at Welsh & Welsh are compassionate, skilled, and experienced people who understand what you’re going through and want to help.
Call us today at (402) 384-8160 for a free consultation.
Nebraska Hit-and-Run Accident Laws