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2021 Traffic Results: Decrease in Traffic, Increase in Fatalities

2021 Car Accident Statistics

Even though less people were on the roads during the year 2021, there was still an increase in fatalities caused by car accidents in the United States according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.

  • Data from the  National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) six-month analysis showed that an estimated 20,160 people died in car accidents in the first half of 2021 alone
  • 2021 saw around an 18.4% increase in accidents compared to 2020
  • 2021 saw the highest number of reported accidents since 2006

These statistics seem to imply that there is an automobile safety crisis that needs to be addressed in our country. These fatalities should not simply be accepted, but there should be several laws and safety precautions in place to prevent these types of accidents.

According to the secretary of the United States Department of Transportation, Pete Buttigieg, the Department is now creating a national roadway safety strategy to make sure that car accidents do not result in fatalities. There will be a team created to address the safety precautions. This team will be made up of a wide variety of experienced professionals, including government officials, engineers, construction workers, etc.

According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration’s behavioral research findings, many drivers in 2021 have found themselves speeding and driving without a seatbelt. Many term commuters found themselves adapting to the open freeways during the pandemic. With businesses and schools beginning to open up again, there is more traffic on the road again, but these drivers are not taking the extra precautions needed to avoid fatal car accidents.

Overall Increase in U.S. Traffic in 2021

According to the Federal Highway Administration, vehicle miles that were driven in the first half of the year in 2021 increased 173 billion miles, which is about 13% compared to the year 2021. Although we are seeing some increase of cars on the road, the fatalities are still at an all-time high and should be addressed by transportation departments.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Deputy Administrator Dr. Stephen Cliff reports that all aspects of government must come together to ensure safety behind the wheel. One of his top concerns is distracted driving. Many have become accustomed to their phones and other sources of technology, such as Bluetooth earphones. This type of technology could get very distracting, and result in aggressive and dangerous driving which creates fatal accidents.

As of today, the federal government is working with the Department of Transportation located in different states to ensure a safe road system. The federal government calls this program the Safe System Approach, where they work closely with local and State Transportation agencies to make sure that federal funding for transportation is used properly, and the roadways are constantly maintained.

As of today, the Approach to Safety Program has notified the top 15 states who experienced the most fatalities, including California. They will receive federal funding to address the most common types of car crashes. The top car accidents that caused the fatalities in the first half of 2021 were pedestrian and bicycle crashes, intersection accidents, and Roadway departures.

The Federal Transportation department has also issued 9 new safety countermeasures, which are specific independent design elements that could be incorporated into roadways to ensure safety. According to the Transportation department, these nine countermeasures were not being used as much. The department will now try to enforce these types of safety countermeasures as much as possible. There were originally 28 proven safety countermeasures, but these 9 will soon be added. The new 9 countermeasures are:

  • Rectangular rapid flashing beacons when someone is crossing the crosswalk
  • Crosswalk visibility enhancements such as brighter lights or street lights
  • Bicycle lanes
  • More street lighting
  • Pavement friction management
  • Speed limits that vary depending on the roadway
  • Wider Edge lines
  • Speed limit settings
  • Speed limit safety cameras

California Car Accident Statistics for 2021

In the year 2020, the state of California reported around 3,723 fatalities from car accidents. This is an increase compared to the 2019 year. The majority of fatalities involved passenger cars, trucks, and motorcycles. One of the biggest causes of these fatalities in California are driving under the influence of alcohol. This is especially common among the younger population.

The city of Los Angeles has reported the highest fatalities from car accidents compared to any other U.S. city in the first six months of 2021. One of the biggest reasons for this was many drivers were caught going too fast on residential streets. According to the Los Angeles Police Department, the latest figures show that the congestion is back and traffic volumes are back on the rise. This means that although high speed crashes may be diminishing, many are now engaging in distracted driving. In Los Angeles, a person is killed as a result of a car crash every 36 hours on average. For the first half of 2021, there was one fatality every 30 hours.

Holidays and Car Accident Fatalities

With the holiday season approaching, many Americans are looking forward to long holiday weekends to take some time off work and enjoy time with their family. Holidays are a feeling of warmth being surrounded by friends and family. However, several of these holidays are associated with higher fatality rates from car accidents. For example, many Americans go on long drives to visit their family members. This includes cross-state trips In their car. The most common holiday weekends that have the highest fatality rates from car accidents are New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.  The day with the second-highest average number of motor vehicle deaths is actually the 4th of July. During these holidays, many resort to drinking and driving. According to the National Safety Council, these deaths are almost always preventable if people were to designate a sober driver or arrange an alternate mode of transportation. Reasons for fatalities caused during the holidays include:

Discuss Your Legal Options with a California Car Accident Attorney Today

It is not easy to go through a car accident. Our experienced California car accident attorneys understand that it is very difficult to go through an accident, whether they were involved in the accident, or they have experienced a family member suffer injuries.

Our attorneys have decades of experience representing car accident victims. You should not have to pay for your injuries. We believe that those who have been injured in a car accident should be compensated for their injuries. We represent the rights of those who have been injured in a car accident due to another’s negligence.

If you or a loved one is involved in a car accident, especially during the holidays, don’t hesitate to contact us. We offer free no risk consultations where we could discuss your car accident case. We understand that it could be very difficult, physically and emotionally to go through such an accident. No car accident is the same, and we offer individualized attention to our clients. We have offices located in California and Nevada, and are available 24/7 via phone and email. You can count on us this holiday season. Need a car accident attorney?

Contact us today!

Happy holidays from the Heidari Law team! Stay safe out there on the roads.

Sam Heidari

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Sam Heidari

Sam Ryan Heidari

Sam Heidari is the founding principal of Heidari Law Group, a law firm specializing in personal injury, wrongful death, and employment law with offices in California and Nevada. Sam Heidari has been practicing law for over 11 years and handles a wide range of cases including car accidents, wrongful death, employment discrimination, and product liability. The Heidari Law Group legal firm is known for its comprehensive approach, handling cases from initial consultation through to final judgment. Sam Heidari is dedicated to community involvement and advocacy for civil liberties.

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