The Number of Missouri Car Accident Deaths On The Rise
Traffic accident deaths have been decreasing nationwide. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, there were 32,719 people killed in traffic accidents in the year 2013, a 3.1 percent decrease from 2012 and a nearly 25 percent decrease from 2004. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for traffic deaths in Missouri. The Missouri State Highway Patrol has reported a significant increase in car accident deaths in 2014.
There was an 11 percent increase in traffic fatalities last year in Missouri. In Southwest Missouri, Highway Patrol Troop D region, there was a 36 percent increase in fatalities. Fourstateshomepage.com reports that many Missouri fatalities involved distracted driving and unbuckled vehicle occupants.
One way local Missouri State Highway Patrol troops try to prevent fatal crashes is by imposing serious consequences for at-fault drivers. For instance, intoxicated drivers could face manslaughter or assault charges for causing a crash. You can also face criminal charges if you injure or kill someone while driving distracted. Furthermore, the family of someone killed by a distracted driver can file a wrongful death lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol, being in a 30-mph car crash without a seat belt is equivalent to falling from a three-story building. In Missouri, occupants without seatbelts have been killed in crashes as slow as 12 miles per hour. Airbags are 40 percent less effective when the occupant is not wearing a seatbelt. Despite these warnings, Missouri drivers and vehicle occupants continue to go unbelted.
Of the people killed in Missouri car accidents last year, 63 percent were not wearing seatbelts. Officials say about 50 percent of those deaths could have been prevented if the occupants were properly secured. Drivers are 42 percent more likely to be killed in a traffic accident if they are not wearing a seatbelt.
Remember to reduce the number of distractions in your vehicle and always wear a seatbelt. If you lose a loved one in a fatal crash, contact an experienced Missouri car accident lawyer to better understand your legal rights and options. Contact Page Law at 1-800-CAR-CRASH, (800) 227-2727.
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