If you live in New Jersey, it’s no secret that our roadways are dangerous, and years of accident statistics point to the severity of the problem. In 2019, we saw a sharp rise in the number of total accidents across the state, as well as hundreds of injuries and significant numbers of fatalities. Below I’ll tell you more about the numbers and what we can learn from them. As always, the Passaic County car accident attorneys at Bavagnoli & Bavagnoli are here for you if you need legal help after an accident. Helping clients get the compensation they need to recover is our top priority, so don’t hesitate to contact us.
Takeaway #1: Total Crashes are on the Rise
If you aren’t convinced that driving in New Jersey is dangerous, the new numbers might alarm you. The most recent (2018) statistics on total New Jersey crashes show that accidents across the state are on the rise at alarming rates. In 2018, there were 278,413 total crashes, an increase of over 6,000 crashes from 2017. In fact, 2018 saw some of the highest numbers of crashes in recent history. Since 2001, there have been only three years where more crashes were recorded.
Takeaway #2: Total Injury-Related Crashes Slightly Declined
Of the total crashes that occurred in 2018, 61,043 involved injuries. This was down somewhat from 2017 and 2016. When we consider the fact that 2001-2004 saw well over 77,000 crashes involving injuries each year, this is clearly a major improvement. However, it’s clear that injuries are still a serious problem. Driving at safe speeds, avoiding distractions, and avoiding drugs and alcohol before getting behind the wheel are just a few of the main ways you can reduce your chances of being injured in an accident.
Takeaway #3: Fatal Crashes Continue to be an Issue
In 2019, according to the New Jersey State Police’s Fatal Accident Investigation Unit, there were 524 crashes in the state that involved fatalities: the same number we saw in 2018. These crashes resulted in 558 total deaths. Despite the state’s efforts to make roadways safer, we are still seeing far too many accident-related fatalities.
Some people are more likely to die in an accident than others. The highest numbers of fatalities were for drivers of the vehicle, which accounted for 289, or 55 percent. This group was followed by pedestrians, which accounted for 176 (34 percent) of the total fatalities. Passengers in vehicles accounted for 81 of the total fatalities, while cyclists accounted for 12.
As a pedestrian, make sure you are following all safety precautions when walking, and as a driver, pay careful attention while driving near schools and other areas with lots of foot traffic.
Takeaway #4: Cell Phones and Driving Don’t Mix
When we look at the numbers for New Jersey crashes involving cell phone usage, we see that cell phones are a key cause. In 2018, 1015 accidents were caused by people using hand-held phones while driving. Of the total crashes involving hand-held phones, 371 crashes resulted in injuries and 503 total injuries were reported. They also resulted in one fatality.
Something worth noting is that while hands-free devices were implicated in far fewer crashes than hand-held devices (377), 160 injuries resulted from these crashes. So while hands-free devices may be somewhat safer to use while driving, they are still involved in a surprisingly high number of crashes and injuries. On a brighter note, total crashes involving cell phones were slightly down from 2017, with 130 fewer cell-involved crashes appearing in the report. The takeaway here is to obviously think twice before using your cell phone or hands-free device while driving.
Takeaway #5: Traffic Deaths Have Common Causes
While a variety of factors are involved in accident fatalities, some causes are more common than others. In New Jersey, accidents at intersections (especially T-bones), unsafe speeds on the interstate, distracted driving-related to cell phone use, alcohol-impaired driving, and driving on holidays are some of the most common factors implicated in traffic deaths.
With roadways as dangerous as these, getting injured in an accident in New Jersey is unfortunately quite likely. Whether you have suffered a major or a minor injury in a crash, working with a car accident attorney in Passaic County can be an important step to take. A good car accident lawyer can help maximize the amount of compensation you receive and improve your chances of a full recovery after an accident.
If you have been injured on a New Jersey roadway, Bavagnoli & Bavagnoli is here to assist you. For over 28 years, we have been helping Northern New Jersey drivers recover compensation for medical bills, lost time from work, pain and suffering and other expenses after an accident.
To find out more about how we can help, get in touch with us for a free consultation today at (973) 785-9522.