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Articles Posted in Car Accident Facts and Statistics

New research is being published all the time that could help prevent future car accidents in Homestead and other cities. This past month, some of the more interesting findings included:

1) A study showing that driverless cars may be more reliable than even professionally trained drivers. Google released two research studies at a conference in California, showing data from the Google driverless cars already on the road. The cars have already logged hundreds of thousands of driving miles and have proven far safer than human motorists. According to the studies, the driverless cars keep a safer driving distance and brake more smoothly than even professional drivers. Many people already predict that the cars will eventually help prevent traffic accidents in Homestead and other communities but many safety experts still would like to see more independent studies of the cars.


2) A study has shown that even some driverless cars on the roads could prevent collisions and injuries. According to a new study by the Eno Center for Transportation, if only 10% of the vehicles on the roads were driverless, traffic fatalities could be reduced by 1,000 annually and we might see up to $38 billion in savings in collisions. If 90% of the vehicles on the roads were driverless, 21,700 fatalities could be prevented each year and $447 billion could be saved.

3) New research shows the dangers of drivers who are under the influence of drugs. A new study from the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health concluded that drivers who are under the influence of drugs while driving have a tripled risk of a fatal car collision, when compared with their drug-free counterparts and combining alcohol and drug uses means that drivers increase their risk of a deadly crash by 23 times compared to sober drivers. Researchers reached these findings by reviewing accident data from the US government.

4) Drivers in older cars may be more likely to be in a fatal accident. A new study from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration concluded that drivers who are in a car that is at least 18 years old are 71% more likely to die in an accident when compared with drivers who drive cars that are no older than three years. Drivers in a car that is 8 to 11 years old are 19% more likely to die in an accident when compared with drivers in a newer car. Drivers in a car that is 4 to 7 years old have a 10% higher chance of being in a fatal crash when compared with motorists in newer cars.

5) Cars with more safety features do not necessarily mean a reduced number of car accidents. According to a study conducted by Dr. Fred Mannering at Purdue University, there was no significant reduced number of car accidents on the roads between 1992 and 1997 that could be attributed to safety features such as ABS brakes. According to Dr. Mannering, drivers who have these features on their cars may not be experiencing a reduced number of accidents because they are overconfident because of the features.

Have you been injured in a car or truck accident in Homestead or any other community? Contact a personal injury attorney who can help.

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If you are in a car crash in Homestead or another Florida city, what are your chances of being injured? If you are a man during your working years, your chances of avoiding injury may be quite good, according to a new study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Car designs have improved over the past generation, introducing new safety features that are designed to help prevent injury. However, these features are more likely to help some types of motorists than others.

The NHTSA study has found that older people and young adult women are more likely than other groups to be seriously injured or killed in a car accident. The research suggests that the risk of dying in a car accident increases by about 3% per year, starting at age 21. This is because people gradually become less hardy and less healthy as they age, on average, increasing their risk of injuries and complications.


Women are also in a higher-risk group. According to the study, women under the age of 35 have a 25-30% higher risk of dying in a car accident when compared with men in the same age bracket. However, this gender discrepancy eases over time so that by age 70 women and men have the same risk of fatalities in traffic accidents. According to the NHTSA, the higher risk for women may be due to the fact that women’s necks have less spinal column strength than a man’s and this can lead to more neck injuries. However, the study also found that young women have more serious abdominal injuries in car accidents when compared with men. Researchers were not able to account for this higher risk.

Another part of the problem may be safety systems in cars. Older cars, especially, have a cookie-cutter approach to safety belts, air bags, and other safety systems. Since women tend to be lighter and shorter than men, they can be seriously injured by a seat belt or an air bag designed for a taller motorist. Newer cars have more adjustable seat belts and air bags that can recognize the size and weight of a passenger.

If you are a younger woman and want to avoid a car or truck accident injury in Homestead, look for a car that offers adjustable airbags, seat belts and seats. Adjust the car systems so that you can see correctly and are less likely to be injured. If you are an older driver, consider accessibility features that allow for greater visibility and greater accessibility. There are also driver rehabilitation programs that help you adjust your car and driving skills if you are ill or have health-related issues which increase your risk of a traffic collision in Homestead or your community.

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A controversial new study from Carnegie Mellon University and the London School of Economics claims that increased use of cellphones does not lead to more traffic accidents. The study’s lead authors, Saurabh Bhargava and Vikram S. Pathania, examined cell phone and accident data from 2002 to 2005. During those years, cell phone carriers offered free calls in the evenings and calls increased 7% after 9 pm to take advantage of the deal.

Examining the data on car accidents during these hours, the researchers found no statistical link between increased calls and increased accidents.
In addition, the researchers examined statistics about cell phone use over the past 20 years. They found that while cell phone use has increased during that time frame, accident rates have actually dropped. Further, the authors examined crash data from states enacting cell phone bans. They found no difference in accident rates before and after the bans. The research was published in the American Economic Journal: Economic Policy.

Does the research prove that cell phones have nothing to do with car accidents in Homestead and other cities? Are legislators not helping things by trying to pass a texting ban in Florida to prevent truck collisions in Homestead and other cities? Maybe not. According to experts, there are several possible issues with the study:

1) The authors looked at overall cell phone use, some of which could have been attributed to passengers. There is no way to tell whether the people using cell phones during a specific time in the evening were driving, sitting in a car, or were driving.

2) The authors looked at cell phone calls. Mobile devices have been found in other studies to be linked to traffic accidents in Homestead and other cities because people use the devices to text, surf the internet, and engage in other activities that are more dangerous than talking.

3) Passing texting laws does not ensuring enforcement. The study’s authors claimed that states with texting bans had no difference in car accident rates. However, just because a state has bans this does not mean that drivers are obeying them. In addition, some studies have suggested that hands-free devices are just as risky as hand-held devices, so having drivers switch from one to the other might not have an effect on accident rates.

4) Cars are getting safer all the time. Accident rates may not be going down or up in relation to cell phone use because other factors are at play. For example, more drivers may be driving distracted (and getting into accidents because of that) but there may be fewer accidents related to brake problems if break systems are improving.

5) There is a strong focus on enforcement for dangerous driving behaviors. Authorities are cracking down on drunk driving in Homestead and other cities and traffic cameras are pushing drivers to avoid other riskier behaviors. Improved enforcement may be cutting down on some accident risks, but that does not mean that cell phone use in cars is safe.

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Traditionally, safety experts have warned drivers about the dangers of older cars when it comes to safety. After all, older cars may not be maintained correctly and may be affected by mechanical problems that could lead to a car accident in Miami or another community. Older cars may also not have the safety features of older cars, which many have thought places the driver and passengers at an increased risk.

A new study may turn that traditional way of thinking around.

A study out of the UK conducted by insurance underwriter Accident Exchange has found that new cars actually have a higher accident rate than older cars during the first six months of ownership. In fact, according to the study, while new cars account for only 2.9% of cars on the roads, they are responsible for 5% of accidents. The study also found that drivers with a new car are twice as likely to be involved in a collision during the first six months of ownership, compared with drivers who have owned their cars for longer.

According to Accident Exchange, the issue may be one of familiarity. Drivers with new cars are still getting used to steering, mirrors, brakes, and other systems in a new car, and the lack of familiarity with the vehicle may get drivers into trouble.

According to the study authors, another issue may be distraction. Drivers may be distracted by the new features of their car, and this may mean that they focus on the car rather than on the road during the first few months of owning a car. Further, drivers with brand-new cars may drive differently, because they are extra cautious with their new purchase. The excessive caution can actually lead to car and truck collisions in Miami and other communities, since driving more cautiously does not necessarily mean driving better.

Although the study’s authors did not mention it, inherent product defects may also contribute to some car collisions with new cars. With new models, defective systems may not have come to light yet and it often takes some car collisions and injuries before products liability claims in Miami and other cities are launched. Usually, it is only after a few injuries have been reported that manufacturers start issuing recalls and offering free changes.

If you have a new car, how can you avoid being involved in a traffic accident in Miami or your community?

Safety experts have always suggested that drivers adjust their cars to their driving needs. Before taking your car out the first few times, spend some time in the driveway getting accustomed to new blind spots, new controls, and new systems. Adjust the seat and mirrors as needed and ensure that you are comfortable in the car and can see clearly. Read the manual or ask the dealership for a demonstration of all the new systems and features of the car.

The first few times you head out with the car, consider taking quieter routes so that you can get used to how the car handles before you take the car on your morning commute or on a more challenging trip. Once you get used to the car, you will be able to handle it as safely as any other vehicle.

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According to statistics:

Florida has a high percentage of drivers. 4 out of 5 Florida residents are licensed drivers. In the Miami area, for example, about 15.3 million people out of a population of 19.3 are licensed motorists. In addition, there are an unknown number of drivers on Florida roads who drive without licenses. Experts estimate that 1-3% of drivers may be unlicensed motorists.

Your chances of being in a car collision in Miami and other Florida cities may not be as high as you fear. In 2013, less than 1.3% of Florida’s licensed drivers are expected to be involved in a traffic crash.

The toll of car accidents in Miami is high. In 2010 alone, there were 235,461 car accidents in Florida, with 2,261 of them resulting in deaths. In Miami-Dade County alone, there were 248 deaths due to traffic accidents that year.

Where you live can affect your chances of a significant car accident injury. Miami Dade leads Florida counties for traffic fatalities, with 248 reported in 2010. That same year, there were 160 car accident fatalities in Broward County, 151 fatalities in Hillsborough County, 129 in Orange County, and 113 in Palm Beach County.

Certain times are more dangerous when it comes to traffic accidents. According to statistics, 55.3% of fatal traffic accidents in Miami and other cities occur at night. Weekends see more accidents than weekdays, with Saturday accounting for 19% of fatalities. The highest number of car accidents in Florida occur in March, with more than 9.4% of car accident occurring during that month.

Where you drive also has an impact. Close to 38% of fatal traffic accidents in 2010 occurred on two-way roadways.

You are more likely to be killed in a car accident or truck accident in Miami or Florida if you are a man. 70.9% of people killed in car accident in 2010 in Florida were men while 29.1% of fatalities were women.

The causes of car accidents vary. Statistics show that the most common causes of car crashes are distracted driving, drunk driving, aggressive driving, inexperienced motorists, and weather.

If you have been in a car accident or pedestrian accident in Miami or any other community, you will want to consult with a personal injury attorney as well as a doctor. A good personal injury lawyer in Miami or your community can help you review your legal options as well as the likely total costs of your injuries. In the end, car accidents are about more than just numbers. Even if statistically you have a low risk of being in an accident, you may find yourself seriously injured in a collision due to someone’s negligence or recklessness. If this happens, you may be have legal options that allow you to seek compensation for pain and suffering, property damage, lost wages, medical costs, and other expenses related to your injury.

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According to the National Safety Council (NSC), the number of car accident fatalities increased 5% between 2011 and 2012. The direct costs of car accidents climbed to a total of 276 billion dollars in 2012. These costs included medical costs, productivity loss, property damage, administrative costs, and costs to employers. According to the NSC, there are a number of reasons for the increase in fatalities:

1) More people are driving. The total number of miles driven across the country increased in 2012 as the economy continued to slowly recover. More cars on the road can mean a higher risk of accidents.

2) Distracted driving. The CDC has reported that the number of distracted drivers involved in fatal car collisions rose seven percent in 2005 and increased to more than ten percent in 2009. Cell phone related accidents in Miami and across Florida are quite common. In addition to cell phones, drivers face multiple distractions. Cars today are equipped with interactive displays, advanced music systems, and more, providing drivers with more distractions than ever before.

3) Drivers who fail to use seatbelts.. If you are involved in a car accident in Miami or anywhere in South Florida, a seat belt can help save your life. It can also help prevent head injuries, spinal cord injuries, and other injuries that are caused when a passenger is thrown about the vehicle during a collision.

4) Drunk driving. Drunk driving accidents in Miami and across South Florida continue to be a concern, despite multiple educational programs and campaigns. Currently, the NHSTA is continuing a program which emphasizes that even drivers who are only slightly affected by alcohol are at increased risk of car accidents. Unfortunately, some motorists assume that if they are only slightly “buzzed” and not completely intoxicated they are safe to drive. Experts and the NHSTA are trying to show drivers that even being slightly affected by alcohol – even having a few drinks – can lead to serious car accident.

5) Inexperienced and young drivers. Teen drivers cause many car accidents in Miami and across South Florida, not because they are bad drivers but because in many cases they are still developing their skills. Experts agree that getting additional driver training for young drivers can help them reduce the risk of an accident.

6) Drowsy driving. Driving fatigue is considered by many experts to be as unsafe as driving inebriated. Drowsy driving causes many car and truck accidents in Miami and across South Florida each year.

7) Unsafe trucks. Commercial trucks are subject to many federal regulations to ensure that they are safe and that they do not pose unnecessary risks on the roads. Unfortunately, in some cases motor carriers and truck drivers ignore these federal rules and when this happens, traffic accidents in Miami and South Florida occur.

8) Motorcyclists not wearing helmets. Motorcyclists who are not wearing helmets at the time of their accident are more likely to suffer head injuries and other serious injuries. If you want to increase your risk of surviving a motorcycle accident in Miami or your community, wear a helmet each time you ride. Keep in mind that many preventable head injuries in Miami and across South Florida are caused each year simply by not wearing helmets.

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A report published yesterday in the American Journal of Public Health reports that suicides across the country surpass even the number of car accident fatalities. According to the report, authored by epidemiology professor Ian Rockett of West Virginia University, in the past ten years falls and overdoses have increased in frequency while the number of car accidents overall has dropped.

According to Rockett’s research, suicides are undercounted, and there could be as many as 20% more suicides than officially listed. While car accident rates have gotten a great deal of attention, Rockett would like to see more attention paid to suicide prevention.

Rockett reached his conclusion by investigating injury death data available from the U.S. National Center for Health Statistics. Looking at injury deaths from 2000 and 2009, Rockett determined that the top causes of unintentional fatalities during this time period were traffic accidents, poisoning, and falls. The top two causes of intentional deaths during the same time period were suicide and homicide. Between 2000 and 2009, according to the research, car accident fatalities declined 25%, while fatalities caused by poisoning increased 128% and fatalities from falls increased 71%. In the same time period, deaths caused by suicides increased 15%. The causes of death during this time period were easier to assess for men than for women.

According to researchers, stigma may be one reason why it is difficult to get more accurate data about suicides – and also why there are fewer programs available to help those who need it. Researchers feel that more cooperation needs to happen between public health sectors, doctors, the public, and legislators to help prevent suicide. More research also needs to be done to determine what more can be done to prevent suicides.

The good news is that now that it is clear there is a problem, more may be done to help prevent the frequency with which suicides occur. After all, steps have been taken to prevent Miami car accidents and accident rates have declined, according to statistics. Since the 1980s, more campaigns and publicity surrounding the dangers of Miami drunk driving have resulted in tougher legislation and special programs designed to reduce the instances of drunk driving. As a result, today drivers are acutely aware that drunk driving causes Miami traffic accidents and the most drivers take steps to drive responsibly. Hopefully, a similar attitude and approach can help society help more suicidal patients.

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According to Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Florida ranks 18th in the country for fatal injuries. According to the two organizations, over 12 000 Florida residents each year die due to preventable personal injuries. For those under age 45 in the state, accidents and violent injuries are the leading fatalities.

The organizations’ findings also suggest that more money could be put towards preventing Miami personal injury. While accidental injury prevention gets very little funding, personal injuries cost the US over $400 billion in medical expenses and in reduced productivity. Accidental deaths cost Florida alone $118 million annually in medical costs.

In Florida alone, 67 out of 100 000 state residents die annually from preventable personal injuries, including Florida and Miami drunk driving accidents, Florida Miami slip and fall accidents, traffic accidents, and other preventable injuries. This is higher than the national average of 58 accidental deaths out of 100 000 US residents. Men also are overrepresented in accidental fatalities. Men account for two out of three accidental deaths.

Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation made ten suggestions for how states could help prevent accidental fatalities. These suggestions include adding a motorcycle helmet law, which could help prevent fatal brain injuries in Miami motorcycle accidents. Another suggestion was for Florida to mandate built-in breathalyzers in the cars of convicted drunk drivers. The two organizations also suggested that Florida could do more to prevent teen dating violence and could pass booster seat laws to prevent childhood injuries in Miami car accidents. Florida already does have bicycle helmet laws, prescription drug monitoring, and seat belt laws, which puts the state ahead of some others when it comes to preventative safety measures.

According to the study and other experts, some of the top preventable injuries in the region include Miami motorcycle accidents, Miami car accidents caused by distracted driving, and Miami injuries and falls caused by alcohol. In many cases, the fatal and serious injuries that emergency doctors see in Miami are quite preventable. While Miami hospitals do a good job of treating Miami brain injury patients and other trauma patients, doctors agree that prevention is key to preventing fatalities and serious accidents.

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New information from the AAA shows that teen drivers are more likely to be in deadly car collisions when they drive with passengers who are under 21 years of age. According to the statistics, having one young passenger and no adult in a passenger vehicle with a teen driver increases a teen driver’s risk of a fatal car accident by 44% when compared with driving without passengers. As each additional young passenger is added, the risk of being involved in a fatal car accident increases. The same research, however, finds that when a passenger in the car is an adult over the age of 35, a teen driver’s risk of being in a fatal car collision is actually decreased by 62%
According to the AAA and other experts, these statistics show what has already been known anecdotally; younger passengers distract teen drivers and may encourage risky behaviors while having an adult in the car can encourage teen drivers to drive more cautiously. According to experts, even when younger passengers are quiet, they can be a distraction for a young driver. Distracted drivers may experience what is known as “inattention blindness.” This occurs when a driver is looking at the roadway but is distracted enough to not process everything in front of them. When this occurs, the driver cannot react in time to obstacles, in many cases, and this can result in Miami pedestrian accidents and traffic accidents.

The implications of the research is clear: if parents want to ensure that they teens are not involved in Miami traffic accidents, it is important to place limits on passengers. Parents may also want to restrict other distraction in the car and even ask teens to drive with an adult passenger during the first few months after being licensed.

Another study, out of Melbourne’s Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, shows that road accidents are the leading cause of teen deaths around the world. International research showed that injuries were the result of 40% of fatalities to young people between the ages of 10 and 24. The single leading cause of death in this age group, according to researchers, was car accidents. Researchers in the study also found an alarming trend: while fatality rates for young children under the age of five have declined over 80% internationally in the past five decades, teen fatalities have not significantly declined in the same time period. Worse, the US has the highest teen fatality rates of 27 developed countries, in part due to the rate of car accidents and violence across the country.

Some countries, including Australia, have reduced teen mortality rates by reducing road speeds, improving licensing programs, and improving road and vehicle quality. It may be time to get more serious about preventing Miami car accidents so that the rate of teen fatalities can be reduced.

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A new study from the Montreal Public Health Department, published in the American Journal on Public Health, suggests that those who live in neighborhoods with low incomes are more likely to be injured in car accidents when compared with car accident victims from more affluent communities. According to the researchers, children are especially susceptible to the economic gap, with children from less well-off neighborhoods being 7.3 times more likely to be hurt as pedestrians in a car accident when compared with children from wealthier communities.
Researchers completed the study by examining neighborhoods in Montreal, Canada by average household income and by comparing traffic accident injuries in each neighborhood between 1999 and 2004. There may be many reasons why lower-income neighborhoods have the troublingly higher rate of car accident injuries, and many of the findings may also be applicable to Miami car accidents:

1) Lower-income neighborhoods may have more traffic. According to the study authors, some lower-income neighborhoods have twice as much traffic and busier streets. While affluent neighborhoods often have residential areas that are well out of the way of noisy traffic, lower-income neighborhoods may have more mixed-use areas and may have more traffic. In Miami, that can mean more Miami traffic accidents.

2) Lower-income neighborhoods have a higher population density. Lower-income areas tend, generally, to have more residents and more businesses, while higher-income areas usually have larger homes, more spaces between buildings, and thus a lower population density. That can mean more people and more cars in low-income areas competing for space, which in turn can mean more congestion and more traffic accidents.

3) Lower-income neighborhoods have residents with less access to cars, meaning that more people walk. According to the study, lower-income pedestrians were 6.6 times more likely to be injured by a vehicle. The study also suggests that Miami bicycle accidents may be a problem in lower-income areas, as cyclists in less affluent neighborhoods were 3.9 times more likely to be injured by a vehicle when compared with cyclists in wealthier areas.

4) Lower-income neighborhoods may be less well funded in terms of signage and infrastructure. Higher-income neighborhoods often have groups dedicated to ensuring that the community stays attractive, with well-paved roads and with correct signage. There may be less pressure on cities to beautify lower-income areas, and higher traffic in these areas can mean that streets are in less pristine condition, paving the way for accidents.

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