The COVID-19 pandemic has changed many aspects of our lives, but there is one thing that has surprisingly remained the same in California—people are still being injured and losing their lives in auto accidents at an alarming rate.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), even with fewer vehicles on the road due to the lockdown and fewer accidents overall, the number of auto accident fatalities in California actually rose from 3,540 in 2019 to 3,723 in 2020. What’s more, based on preliminary data, 2021 auto accident fatalities are on track to exceed 2020 figures.
Before the pandemic, there was a general assumption that fewer autos on the road would lead to fewer accidents and fewer fatalities. But that is not what we have been witnessing in California and other states, as less traffic has tempted some drivers to drive with less care, leading to a higher rate of deadly accidents and a higher death toll.
The lesson we are learning now seems to be that accidents are bound to happen. The more vehicles on the road, the more accidents. The fewer vehicles on the road, the more people will drive carelessly and the more accidents and fatalities.
The Latest Auto Accident Statistics
Since 2019, the leading cause of death in the United States has been auto accidents. This is true for California, the same as it is for every other state in the country.
As it stands, California (with 3563 auto accident fatalities and 3259 fatal auto accidents) is second only to Texas (with 3642 auto accident fatalities and 3305 fatal auto accidents) when it comes to the number of deadly auto accidents in 2021 so far.
What’s more, as more Californians have gotten vaccinated and are back on the roads after months of pandemic-related restrictions, early data shows that 2021 is shaping up to be even deadlier than 2020. The number of auto accident fatalities in California for the first quarter of 2021 rose by 7% over the same quarter in 2020.
Have You Been Injured in an Auto Accident in California?
Based on current data, if you drive, and you haven’t already been in at least one auto accident, it is just a matter of time before you will be.
The leading cause of auto accidents in California continues to be:
• Speeding or driving too fast for road conditions;
• Driving while impaired by alcohol or drugs;
• Distracted driving, including cell phone usage; and
• Failure to follow the rules of the road (e.g., a failure to yield the right of way, failure to obey traffic signals and signs, etc.)
All too often, these accidents result in serious injuries, mounting medical bills, lost wages and income for extended periods, tremendous pain and suffering, and in the worst cases, death.
The Most Common Auto Accident Injuries
According to the Insurance Research Council, the five most common injuries suffered in auto accidents in the United States are as follows:
1. Soft tissue injuries;
2. Herniated discs;
3. Nerve damage;
4. Mild concussions; and
Furthermore, over 80% of minor impact injuries sustained in an auto accident will result in permanent ligament damage. It is, therefore, important to be thoroughly examined by a health care provider after being involved in an auto accident to ensure that your injuries are accurately diagnosed, treated, and documented, both for your long-term health and for insurance purposes.
Many auto accident victims feel shaken but otherwise uninjured at the time of the accident, but a day or two later, become symptomatic, experiencing pain, stiffness, headaches, and other symptoms. Therefore, after being involved in an auto accident, you should always get checked out by a health care provider, whether you notice any injuries or not, ideally, by a health care provider who is trained in documenting and treating auto accident victims.
Compensation for Auto Accident Victims
An auto accident can be devastating for the victims and their families. What makes it even worse is when the accident was caused by someone else’s negligent or careless behavior.
But, if the accident wasn’t your fault, you shouldn’t have to worry about how you will pay your medical bills and support your family while off from work recovering from your injuries. Fortunately, the law entitles you to bring a personal injury claim against the at-fault party, and their auto insurance provider, to recover compensation for your injuries and other losses.
It is also fortunate that you don’t have to go it alone. Working with the right auto accident attorney can give you peace of mind, knowing that you have someone in your corner fighting for the compensation you and your family need and deserve.
If you or a loved one was injured or killed in a car accident in California, call eAccidents @ 844-400-0123 today to arrange a free consultation with an experienced California auto accident attorney. We will help you hold the at-fault parties accountable for their negligent behavior.