Traffic Death Toll Rises Nationwide, NHTSA Reports

Initial statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are that the number of traffic deaths in the U. . has risen by nearly 5.5 percent just in the last year.Unfortunately, that trend doesn’t seem as if it will be abating anytime soon.

SerioussBangor car accidents have so far been plentiful this summer.

A two-car crash around 7:45 a.m. on a Friday on Norridgewock Road resulted in injuries so severe that one woman had to be airlifted by helicopter to the nearest hospital. According to investigators, a 19-year-old female drove directly into the path of a 28-year-old female, with two young children in the vehicle with her, while traveling 55 miles-per-hour. The 19-year-old was listed in critical but stable condition.

Earlier that same day, a tractor trailer crash resulted in the death of a 23-year-old bicyclist.

The day before, a man was killed in a single-car Trenton crash after losing control of his vehicle around a sharp turn, running off the road and slamming into several sizable trees.

And in Augusta, two people were killed when a truck, driven by a Chinese national, crossed the center line and struck a vehicle in oncoming traffic. Both drivers were pronounced dead.

All of this was within a matter of just a couple days. When you start to analyze these figures, those statistics seem to hit the mark, and drive home the point: It’s getting more dangerous out there.

The NHTSA reports that there were 32,267 people who lost their lives in traffic fatalities in 2011. Initial reports from 2012 are that 34,080 people have been killed in motor vehicle crashes. If this figure holds true when the final counts are in, it will be the first annual increase in traffic fatalities this country has seen since 2004-2005. Since that year, it’s dropped about 25 percent.

The figures seem to suggest that we saw an especially dramatic spike of fatal crashes in the first quarter of last year – a 12.6 percent increase. An uptick that high hasn’t been reported since the late 1970s.

Part of the reason we’re seeing these figures climb is that more people are driving than in recent years. We saw a 0.3 percent increase in the number of vehicle miles traveled, which amounted to a total of more than 9 billion last year. That’s a direct result of a steadily improving economy. More people have jobs to drive to and from, more people can afford gas and cars, more people are ordering products and services delivered by truckers and people are more apt to take road trips and vacations than they were before.

Still, this does not give license to people to drive carelessly or under the influence or while negligently fatigued. These remain the top reasons for fatal traffic collisions, and they are all 100 percent preventable.

If you have been injured in a Bangor car accident, contact us at 1-800-804-2004 or read more on our website.

Additional Resources:
Car accident sends Skowhegan woman to Bangor hospital, diverts Trek Across Maine bicyclists, June 15, 2013, By Abigail Curtis, Bangor Daily News

More Blog Entries:
Prevent Maine Car Accident Risk on Road Trips, June 14, 2013, Bangor Car Accident Injury Lawyer Blog

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