How Many People Die in Car Accidents Each Year?

Driving is one of the most common activities that Americans engage in every day; in fact, there is probably not an American out there who could say that they haven’t been in a motor vehicle. But while driving may be ubiquitous–and necessary for many–it is also very dangerous. To be sure, auto accidents are a top killer every year in our country.

Consider the following statistics about fatal car crashes in America and in Illinois, and what to do if you’ve lost a loved one in a car accident in our state. For answers to questions that are specific to you, please reach out to our Rockford personal injury lawyers at Tuite Law directly.

Fatal Car Accident Statistics

The most recent years for which data is available, as published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA),  are 2017 and 2016.  Facts about fatal car accident statistics are as follows:

  • In 2017, there was nearly a two percent decrease in car accident fatalities from the previous year; however, there were 37,133 people who lost their lives in motor vehicle accidents that year.
  • In 2016, 37,461 people were killed in traffic collisions.
  • A large percentage of fatal accidents were caused by distracted drivers – 3,450.
  • A large percentage of fatal collisions involved drunk drivers – over 10,000 people lost their lives in alcohol-impaired crashes.
  • 10,111 fatalities were the result of speeding-related accidents.
  • Had more people wear their seatbelts, it’s likely that more people would still be alive today. The data shows that 10,428 people who died were unbelted at the time of the collision.

In Illinois, the statistics are equally as grim. Data collected by the Illinois Department of Transportation reveals that in 2017, there were 998 fatal crashes resulting in 1,090 fatalities, a slight increase from 2016. While the DOT is certain that 311 people who were killed in crashes were using a seatbelt at the time of the accident, data suggests that 245 people who died were not using a restraint, or were not using a safety restraint properly, at the time of the accident.

While 2019 is not yet over, the state has published current information about the number of fatal accidents that have taken place this year (up to April 3, 2019). So far, there have been 151 fatal crashes and 160 fatalities, a decrease of 81 fatalities from January 2018 through April 3, 2018.

The data suggests that wearing a seatbelt, slowing one’s speed, driving sober, and putting away distractions could all be critical steps in reducing the number of serious car crashes in our state and nationwide.

What Can You Do if a Loved One Dies in a Car Accident?

If you are a person who has lost a family member in a car accident in Illinois, you may be able to seek compensation for funeral and burial expenses, lost wages, and the value of your emotional harm. By calling our Illinois car accident lawyers, you can learn more about wrongful death claims in our state and steps to take to initiate a claim.

To schedule your free consultation with our empathetic law firm, please call us today or send us a message. We are here to help you when you’ve suffered a great loss.