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The Impact of Car Accidents in the U.S.

November 02, 2017

The federal government predicts that an auto accident-free America is a possibility within the next thirty years. With the introduction of accident-avoidance technology and other self-driving features, automakers are hoping to make car accidents caused by human error a thing of the past. Not only would a car accident-free country save nearly $190 billion in damages every year, it would also save thousands of lives.

Human Cost

The Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that around 11.3 million car accidents injure 2.4 million people every year in the United States. In 2016 an estimated 40,000 people died in car accidents, making it the deadliest year on American roads in nearly a decade. That number is up by almost 2,000 fatalities from the previous year.

Economic Cost

Car crashes have created a billion-dollar economic loss in the United States, affecting every person in the country. According to NHTSA’s most recent data, car crashes cost Americans $277 billion a year. That total includes the cost of medical bills, property damage, emergency services, insurance, and court fees. Crashes involving speeding vehicles cost Americans the most, followed by drunk driving crashes and distracted driving crashes. NHTSA estimates that every person in the U.S. pays an average of $1,350 for auto accident damages every year.

Cost of Harm

Harm is not as tangible or as easy to quantify, but by NHTSA’s calculations, auto accidents cost the country a whopping $594 billion in harm annually. This is the cost of lost wages and productivity, pain, and rehabilitation. This figure also includes the cost for the loss of human life and the impact that loss has on surviving family members. Speeding accidents cost the most in overall harm annually, followed by drunk driving crashes.

Self-Driving Cars

The federal government encourages the use of self-driving cars in an effort to achieve the goal of zero highway deaths within thirty years. The “Self Drive Act” which recently cleared the House would expand NHTSA grants for automakers seeking to test self-driving technology from 2,500 to 100,000 annually over the next three years. The bill would inevitably bring autonomous cars to market much faster than expected. With safe, well-tested self-driving technology, auto experts predict that autonomous cars can potentially save $190 billion in damages every year and 300,000 lives every decade.

Cherry Hill Car Accident Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Provide Aggressive Representation for Car Accident Victims

If you have been injured by another driver’s negligence, the Cherry Hill car accident lawyers at DiTomaso Law can help get you the compensation you deserve. Call 856-414-0010 or contact us online to schedule an appointment. We offer free, no obligation consultations to anyone injured in an accident.

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