Motorists in Illinois may benefit from learning more about the recent trends and statistics concerning car crashes in the United States. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration states that, during 2010, car crashes in America cost nearly $1 trillion in loss of life and loss of productivity. The NHTSA also estimates that approximately 10 million accidents go unreported in the United States every year. Despite six consecutive years of declines in motor vehicle crashes and fatality rates, the number of crashes and deaths increased significantly during the first quarter of 2012.
More than 33,500 people were killed in motor vehicle accidents during 2012, representing more than a 3 percent increase from the previous year. During 2012, more than 2.3 million people were injured in car accidents, 6.5 percent more than in 2011. The Insurance Research Council states that the increase in auto injury claimants has been outpacing the rate of inflation. Average claimed economic losses between 2007 and 2012 increased by 4 percent among bodily injury claimants and 8 percent among claimants of personal injury protection.
According to the NHTSA, on average, individual crash victims pay around 26 percent of all crash costs while parties not directly involved in the collision pay almost 75 percent. Private insurance companies pay for approximately 50 percent of these costs. On average, motor vehicle accidents caused injuries every 14 seconds during 2012 and a death every 16 minutes. The most common causes of these accidents were distracted driving, using cellphones, running red lights, fatigue, speeding and drunk driving.
People who are injured in a car accident may benefit from contacting a legal representative. Lawyers might be effective in serving as intermediaries for communicating with insurers or investigators. Legal counsel may also help injured victims or surviving relatives obtain restitution to account for hardships and losses caused by a crash.
Source: Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association, “Cost of Auto Crashes & Statistics“, October 10, 2014