Recently, the United States Department of Transportation National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released a preview of 2019 data from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System and preliminary estimates for the first half of 2020 which show a continued annual decline in traffic deaths in comparison to prior years. In 2019, 36,096 people were killed in motor vehicle accidents on United States roadways. This represents a 2% decrease from the reported 36,835 fatalities in 2018. This marks the third consecutive year that motor vehicle fatalities declined.
Posts tagged "fatal car crash"
In 2018, Elaine Herzberg, then 49 years old, was hit by a car as she wheeled her bicycle across the road. An investigation revealed that the car's safety driver, Ms. Vasquez, had been watching an episode of the television show The Voice at the time of the accident. At the time, Uber was testing their self-driving technology.
According to a recent report by The National Safety Council, preliminary traffic fatality data from March 2020 shows that as Americans began driving less and covering fewer miles, the emptier roads became more lethal. Researchers compiled traffic fatality data from all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Researchers reported an eight percent decrease in the overall number of fatalities in March 2020 compared to March 2019. The number of miles driven also decreased by 18.6 percent compared to the previous year. However, the death rate per 100 million vehicle miles driven was 1.22 in March, up from 1.07 in March 2019. This represents a 14 percent increase in fatality rates per miles driven in March compared to March 2019.
For the past six weeks, most Austin drivers welcomed the open roads throughout the city mainly due to recent COVID-19 lockdown orders. Fewer drivers on the road eased the city's congestion, allowing drivers to get to places much faster than times before the state's stay-at-home orders went into effect. While streets and traffic congestion seem to have largely diminished, car crashes resulting in serious injuries have spiked within the city's limits during this time.
It is no secret that the Houston Metropolitan area leads the nation in fatal crashes involving impaired drivers. Between 2001 and 2016, the Houston area (a nine-county region) had more fatal crashes caused by intoxicated drivers than any other major metropolitan area in the country. Fortunately, with the help of technology, law-makers, law enforcement, and advocacy organizations, there has been a decrease across the nation in the number of drunken driving deaths in the last several years. Unfortunately, there has been an increase in the number of drugged driving deaths.
At least one person has died on Texas roads every day since November 7, 2000. Fatalities are on the rise despite the Texas Department of Transportation's and the Texas Transportation Commission's efforts to "end the streak."
In January 2018, an armored truck driver in Arlington, Texas, made an unexpected left-hand turn, hitting and killing a motorcyclist. The motorcyclist's family filed a lawsuit against the security company that employed the driver, arguing that the company had a history of failing to adequately vet, train, and supervise its drivers.
In December 2018, a Dallas jury returned a $25 million wrongful death verdict against a club in Dallas. In reaching its verdict, the jury found that the club over-served former Dallas Cowboys player Josh Brent, who flipped his Mercedes, killing his friend and teammate Jerry Brown.
As reported by the Houston Chronicle earlier this year, Houston has the deadliest roads and drivers of any major metropolitan area in America. It is no secret that Houston's streets are particularly dangerous for cyclists and pedestrians. Hit-and-run accidents involving pedestrians are significantly more common in Houston than the national average, and we have reported a number of hit-and-run fatalities involving pedestrians in these pages.
A disregard for speed limits and Texas Transportation Code laws can cost lives and cause injuries, as was the case with 17-year-old Zachary Escobar, a pedestrian. On the night of December 29, 2015, Defendant was operating a Mercedes SUV well in excess of the posted speed limit on Sendera Ranch Drive in Montgomery County, Texas. Defendant negligently and with no regard for the safety and well-being of others struck and killed Zachary Escobar.