Few resolutions will have a greater impact on the safety of you and your family than resolving to be a better driver in 2012. As our Montgomery personal injury attorneys recently reported on our Alabama Injury Lawyer Blog, there is much room for improvement.
Alabama car accidents are a leading killer of kids, teens and adults under the age of 34. In so far as age groups are concerned, teenagers and retired adults are most at risk. Bicyclists, pedestrians and motorcycle riders also share outsized risk. But that doesn’t make the rest of us safer. Make no mistake about it, car accidents are your family’s leading risk for a traumatic accident.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently reported, more than 860 motorists died on Alabama roadways in 2010 — representing an increase in traffic fatalities in our state even as the nation as a whole recorded a reduction in traffic fatalities.
Nationwide, nearly 33,000 people died on the road.
Leading causes included:
Drunk Driving: One-third of traffic fatalities nationwide involve a driver who is under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Don’t drink and drive.
Bicycle Accidents: More than 600 riders were killed and another 51,000 were seriously injured in fatal bicycle accidents in Alabama and elsewhere. Men in their 30s and 40s have become among the most common victims as cycling has increased in popularity for both recreation and fitness. These accidents often result in very serious, debilitating injuries and can have a devastating impact on a family’s finances.
Pedestrian Accidents: The number of pedestrians killed in accidents nationwide continues to rise. In 2010, a total of 4,280 walkers were killed — compared to 4,109 in 2009. More than 70,000 were seriously injured, an increase of 11,000 accident victims over the previous year. School children and senior citizens are among the most at risk.
Motorcycle Riders: The number of serious and fatal motorcycle accidents has skyrocketed in recent years. In 2010, a total of 4,502 riders were killed — compared to 4,469 in 2009. Another 82,000 were seriously injured. Like cycling, motorcycle accidents often result in very serious or fatal injuries — and victims are typically a household’s primary wage earner.
The common thread in all these accidents is driver behavior. More than half of all motorcycle accidents that involve another vehicle are the fault of the other vehicle’s driver. Failure to yield is the most common cause. Bicycle and pedestrian accidents share common causes. And drivers can prevent drunk driving accidents simply by not climbing behind the wheel after having too much to drink.
Other common causes of motor vehicle crashes in Alabama include speeding, distracted driving, aggressive driving, red-light running and failure to yield at intersections, in parking lots or when pulling onto the road from a private drive.
Do your part to keep the roads safe in 2012. The life you are saving could be your own or that of a friend, family member or loved one.
If you, someone in your family or a loved one has been involved in a traffic accident in Montgomery or elsewhere throughout the state, contact the personal injury lawyers at Allred & Allred P.C. for a free consultation to discuss your rights. Call 334.396.9200 to speak with an experienced car accident attorney today.
NHTSA Rates New Model Cars to Determine Effectiveness of Safety Features in a Car Accident in Alabama and Elsewhere, Alabama Injury Lawyer Blog, October 31, 2011
Novice Drivers Most at Risk of Teen Car Accident in Montgomery Within Days After Obtaining a License, Alabama Injury Lawyer Blog, October 21, 2011