With driving statistics down in 2020 — such as miles driven, for instance, or the number of drivers on the road at any given time — one would think accident stats would drop, as well. However, when you look at the fatal car accident stats, you see that they increased notably.
For instance, the government statistics show that there were 1.11 fatalities for every 100 million vehicle miles traveled in 2019. In 2020, that number increased to 1.37 fatalities for every 100 million vehicle miles traveled. This resulted in more fatal crashes in 2020 than in 2019 or many of the years before.
Why did this sudden increase happen?
Pinning down exactly why this happened can prove difficult, but researchers have speculated that the issues involved could be:
- Driving under the influence
- Lack of seatbelt use
- Increased speed
For instance, cases in which a person was ejected from a car went up by 20%. This suggests that seat belts were not being used as much as they should have — and that drivers were going quite fast. Crashes with speeding as a major cause went up by 11%. This could be directly due to the fact that people weren’t driving as much, leading to open roads and less traffic congestion. Drivers who literally couldn’t have sped on packed roads in 2019 were able to do so in 2020, and so they were more seriously injured when accidents took place.
Did this spike affect you and your family?
If the spike in accidents meant you were seriously injured or a family member was killed, you need to know if you have a right to financial compensation for medical bills, funeral costs, lost wages and much more.