Recent years have seen an increase in fatal car accidents. For instance, 2021 was a 15-year high, and the numbers were still climbing. From 2019 to 2022, there was a jump in fatal crashes of about 22% – a massive increase for just a few years.
Prior to this, the trend was for fatalities to generally decrease from year to year. Some researchers have expressed hope that this increase is an abnormal blip, something that will reverse course on its own, but it’s unclear if that’s going to happen. So why did things change and why are the roads more dangerous?
Risky driving decisions
The big problem is just that people are making dangerous decisions. These include things like racing, excessively speeding, intentionally running red lights, making aggressive lane changes, driving under the influence and not wearing a seatbelt. All of these factors work together to drastically increase the number of fatalities.
One issue to consider is that traffic levels were down for a few years, mostly in 2020 and 2021. This caused an increase in speed, leading to more severe accidents, because there wasn’t as much traffic congestion. But it’s clear that speed is not the only issue and that drivers are generally just embracing more risky behavior. Police officers have also reported being less likely to pull vehicles over, which could contribute to these driving habits.
Unless this mindset changes, many serious accidents will happen year in and year out. Those who have been injured or lost loved ones need to know how to seek financial compensation for funeral costs, medical bills, lost wages and more.