Individual drivers benefit from motor vehicle use due to convenience, as does society as a whole. On-demand transportation can open up a world of possibilities, from taking jobs in the next city over to planning family road trips for cost-effective vacations.
Of course, each individual driver has to accept a certain degree of personal risk, just like society must account for the damage sometimes caused by motor vehicles. As driving has become an essential part of daily life, better safety practices have helped reduce the risk involved in motor vehicle transportation. Better safety features in vehicles and more assertive traffic laws have helped to gradually reduce the number of fatal collisions that occur over multiple decades.
Unfortunately, that trend has recently reversed. The number of fatal collisions has been on the rise in recent years, meaning that drivers on the road in 2022 have a much higher risk of dying in a crash than they would have had a few years ago.
There have been years of consecutive fatality increases
2020 saw some unusual changes to American life that resulted in a reduction in the total number of miles traveled in motor vehicles. You might think that fewer miles traveled would translate to fewer collisions and fewer fatalities, but that was not what happened. Instead, 2020 and 2021 both saw marked increases in traffic fatalities when compared with 2019.
Early data from the beginning of 2022 shows that this trend continued into this new year, resulting in a 22% overall increase in fatal car crashes. It is impossible to predict when crash rates may begin to decline again and what kinds of policy changes may be necessary to reduce traffic fatalities back to 2019 rates.
How can this information help you?
Understanding that your traffic risk is higher than it has been in recent history doesn’t have to frighten you, but it should inform your attitude toward driving. Drivers that recognize that other people are likely to make unsafe decisions on the road can better engage in defensive driving tactics that could help them avoid a collision. Identifying major risk factors can help protect you, as can reviewing and upgrading your motor vehicle insurance coverage.
Understanding what contributes to Louisiana car crashes can help you be a smarter and safer driver.