NHTSA Traffic Crash Data a Call To Action for Buffalo Drivers

Dec 2015

Buffalo auto accident attorneyIf you drove in 2015, you faced an increased risk of becoming involved in a motor vehicle accident. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration warns there were significantly more motor vehicle collisions in 2015 compared with 2014. The year is over, so bringing crash rates down for last year is now impossible. However, drivers can and should view the higher crash rates as a wake-up call to improve driver safety in 2016.

Improving Driver Safety in 2016 To Fight Rising Traffic Crash Rates

The total number of fatalities in motor vehicle collisions in 2015  increased 8.1 percent from the 32,675 people who were killed in 2014. The fatality rate in 2015 also rose 4.4 percent from the 1.07 deaths per 100 million vehicle miles driven in 2014. The significant rise in deaths is a reversal of a downward trend in car crash deaths which had been occurring over the past several years.

How can drivers help to reverse these rising crash rates next year? There are many different things motorists should make a commitment to do so 2016 does not show another rise in collision rates. Safe driving tips include:

  • Driving the speed limit and slowing down in bad weather conditions. Winter in Buffalo means snow, and drivers need to allow themselves plenty of time to get to their destination when conditions are not ideal.
  • Avoiding driving in bad weather whenever possible. If the weather report is warning of a storm, postpone non-essential trips. If you must drive, refrain from passing snow plows and try to stick to more well-traveled roads which are more likely to be plowed.
  • Keeping vehicles well-maintained. Changes in temperature can lead to changes in tire air pressure, which can result in tire blowouts.  Keep the tires properly inflated and have other car parts, like the brakes, checked regularly to make sure mechanical failure does not cause collisions.
  • Avoiding using any type of electronic device or smart phone. Apple watches are the latest concern when it comes to distracted driving. NHTSA warns 10 percent of deadly accidents in 2014 involved a driver who was distracted when the crash happens. All products, including hands-free ones, are a big risk factor for collisions.
  • Never drinking and driving. In 2014, drunken drivers caused 9,967 of the total fatalities- which was around a third of all car accident deaths.
  • Staying awake and alert. In 2014, 2.6 percent of crash deaths were attributed to drivers who were drowsy. The number of drowsy drivers who cause crashes may be underreported since motorists often do not admit when they were too tired but kept driving anyway.
  • Being especially careful when traveling through intersections. Close to 40 percent of the collisions within the United States occur when the motorists are at an intersection, with most of these crashes happening because drivers don’t look carefully enough before going into the intersection.
  • Buckling up. Forty-nine percent of the people who died in car accidents in 2014 had no seat belts on when they were involved in the fatal crash which ended their lives.

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