Drivers in Wisconsin may be interested to know that the 2018 preliminary report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is out. While there has been some improvement in one area, there are lingering safety concerns for other areas. Overall, the number of motor vehicle accident deaths went down about 1% from 37,133 in 2017 to 36,750 in 2018.
The risk of dying in a car crash is still much less than it was in 2009, for example. And 2018 is now the second year in a row to see a decrease in traffic fatalities with 2017 seeing a 2% decline. Yet it should be remembered that the spike in fatalities in 2015 and 2016 was the most dramatic that the country had seen since the 1960s.
By 2016, many people were wondering if a new trend in traffic fatalities had begun, linking it with the escalating number of smartphone users. This may be partly to blame. But there is another factor, urbanization, that should be taken into account. With more people moving to the cities, more accidents are occurring there and fewer in rural regions.
Urbanization is also putting more pedestrians and bicyclists at risk for a crash. According to the NHTSA report, pedestrian and bicyclist deaths went up 10% and 4%, respectively, in 2018.
All sorts of negligent actions can lead to motor vehicle accidents. Drivers may be distracted by their phones or drive when drowsy, drunk or drugged. Whatever the cause of an accident, those who are injured and whose degree of fault is less than the other’s may pursue a personal injury lawsuit. Filing and negotiating for a fair settlement is a complicated process, so victims might benefit from legal guidance. If they cannot settle out of court, victims and their attorneys may prepare for litigation.