Motor Vehicle Accidents: The Statistics

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published April 3, 2017. It has been revamped and updated to ensure accuracy of the motor vehicle accidents statistics.

According to 2020 annual traffic crash data, a total of 38,824 lives were lost in traffic crashes nationwide – the highest number of fatalities since 2007.

In addition,

  • There are approximately 6.75 million car accidents in the U.S. every year. (B​TS)
  • On average, there are approximately 18,510 car crashes per day. (BTS)
  • Approximately 1.35 million people are killed in road crashes each year. That translates to 3,700, on average, who lose their lives every day. (CDC) Plus, an additional 20-50 million suffer non-fatal injuries, often resulting in long-term disabilities. (WHO)

Are you driving as alert and defensively as you could be?


Motor Vehicle Accident Statistics

Road traffic injuries are predicted to become the fifth leading cause of death by 2030. (WHO)

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Seat belt use cuts the risk of serious injury by 50% and the risk of death by 45%. (CDC)

  • Every day, 29 people in the US die in motor vehicle crashes that involve alcohol impaired driving. This translates to one death every 50 minutes. (CDC)
  • Nearly 950,000 car crashes were caused by cell phone use while driving. That means 1 out of every 6 motor vehicle accidents is caused by texting and driving. (NHTSA)
  • In 2020, 3,142 lives were lost in crashes involving distracted drivers and 8% of fatal crashes involved distracted drivers.
  • The most common places car accidents occur are, 1) parking lots, 2) rural highways, 3) stop signs, and 4) two-lane roads.

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Common Causes of Motor Vehicle Accidents

Motor vehicle accidents often result in serious injuries They are also the most common type of personal injury claim. Top causes include:

  • Distracted Driving. Not just cell phone use, but all causes of distraction including eating, reading, brushing hair, applying makeup and more.
  • Intoxicated Driving. Too many get behind the wheel after having one or two drinks – or taking prescription medication or other illicit drugs. Never drive if you have been drinking or taken any kind of narcotic.
  • Speeding. It is better to be late and arrive alive than speed and have an accident. Stay within the posted limits.
  • Reckless Driving. Be conscious of your actions on the road. Curtail excessive lane changes and aggressive driving behaviors.
  • Running Traffic Signals. Serious car accidents occur when you fail to stop at a red light or stop sign.
  • Tailgating. Never drive too close; you never know when the vehicle in front of you may have to break quickly.

You cannot control the driving behavior of those in front or around you so be alert to these behaviors and drive defensively to avoid being in an accident.


Questions about your personal injury claim? Contact us for a free Case Evaluation

Have you been seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident in which you suffered serious injuries due to another’s negligence? If you are ready to speak to an attorney, call Nash & Franciskato at (877) 284-6600. We have a successful track record of helping accident victims collect the compensation they deserve.

One of our experienced staff will speak with you personally and will provide you with a free, no-obligation review of your case.

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Read related blog articles Personal Injury and Automobile Accidents


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