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HAVE FATAL CALIFORNIA MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENTS INCREASED?

A number of reasons exist for the drop in traffic fatalities, not the least of which is the fact that vehicles are just safer to drive than they were decades ago.

It’s logical to think that an increase in population through the years has also led to an increase in drivers on California roadways. With more drivers, you would expect to see more accidents reported — and, subsequently, more motor vehicle-related deaths. U.S. Census numbers from 1990 through 2009 indicate that fatal accident numbers have declined over the years, however.

In 1990, there were 5,192 fatal accidents reported in the state of California. By 2000, that number had dropped to 3,753. The number increased again in 2005 to 4,333 and dropped again with the 2009 reporting when 3,081 fatal accidents were reported.

When compared to the total number of miles driven by California drivers, the fatality rate in 1990 was 2 per every million miles driven. In 2009, that number was only 1 per every million miles.

The drop in fatalities in California mirrors the totals for the nation. The per million miles driven numbers for the nation dropped from 2.1 in 1990 to 1.1 in 2009. The total number of fatalities reported in the nation dropped from 44,599 to 33,808 during the same time period.

A number of reasons exist for the drop in traffic fatalities, not the least of which is the fact that vehicles are just safer to drive than they were decades ago. Seat belt, air bag, roll cage and other safety requirements better protect passengers and drivers during accidents, helping to reduce injuries and fatalities when crashes occur.

Even with new safety measures, however, car accidents can lead to serious injuries and death. Individuals and families who are impacted by such issues often face trying times physically, emotionally and financially. While the law can’t speed up emotional or physical recovery, compensation processes through liability claims and lawsuits can provide for financial needs to help individuals concentrate on recovery.

Source: U. S. Census, “Table 1103. Motor Vehicle Accidents–Number and Deaths: 1990 to 2009,” accessed Aug. 28, 2015

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