Preliminary Estimates Show that the Number of Fatal Car Accidents Declined in 2019

In a year that has seemed to bring little good news, we are finally seeing some in the newest report from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA): the number of fatal vehicle accidents in 2019 appears to be lower than the number of fatal vehicle accidents in 2018. Read on to get the details, and remember, you can contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation if you have suffered a wrongful death in your life.

The Data That Was Looked At

The stats come from a preview of the 2019 data released from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System and the preliminary estimates for the first six months of 2020. Specifically, they looked at two reports: “Special Report: Examination of the Traffic Safety Environment During the Second Quarter 2020” and “Drug and Alcohol Prevalence in Seriously and Fatally Injured Road Users Before and During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency”.

What the Data Showed

The data showed some interesting information. First, traffic deaths across the country went down from 2018 to 2019. In total, there were just shy of 37,000 fatal vehicle accidents in 2019, which is a decrease of 2% from the 36,835 fatalities in the year before – this even though vehicle miles traveled increased by almost 1%.

When all the numbers were crunched, the fatality rate for 2019 is estimated at 1.10 fatalities for every 100 million vehicle miles traveled. This is not only a decrease from the 1.14 fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled in 2018, but it is the lowest rate we’ve seen since 2014.

Fatalities Were Down in Almost All Traffic Safety Categories

The studies break down the data into specific traffic safety categories, almost all of which are improved from 2018 to 2019. Passenger vehicle occupants are 2.8% safer, motorcycle stats are down 0.5%, pedestrian fatalities decreased by 2.7%, and pedacyclists are 2.9% down. Fatalities that involved at least one big rig or other large trucks were almost exactly the same, with 5,006 in 2018 and one less in 2019.

Fatality Estimates Are Down for the First Half of 2020 as Well

The NHTSA has also released their preliminary estimates for the first six months of 2020. The second quarter, which occurred during the height of COVID restrictions, had an overall decline in traffic fatalities of about 3.3% when compared to the same quarter in 2019. Of course, traffic volume during that time was down about 16% from the previous year, which means that if you look at the volumes of miles traveled, fatalities were actually higher in 2020 than 2019.

If you have lost a loved one or been seriously injured in a car accident, we welcome you to contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation.