The year 2020 was not the best for traffic safety on North Carolina’s roads. According to statistics compiled by the North Carolina Department of Transportation, there were just over 247,000 crashes reported on this state’s roads.
While this was a decrease from the previous year, the number of miles people traveled in 2020 dropped significantly as well.
Disturbingly, the number of fatalities increased from 1,426 in 2019 to 1,658 in 2020. Overall, both the fatality per miles rate and crash per miles rate hit their highest levels since 2015.
On a slightly happier note, the number of reported injuries did decrease during the same time period, from 126,475 victims to 105,382 victims.
Most of the deaths and injuries on North Carolina’s roads are preventable
The statistics also show that a number of common dangerous driving behaviors continue to contribute to serious motor vehicle accidents in North Carolina.
For example, distracted driving contributed to almost 18% of all accidents. Distracted driving accounted for 157 traffic-related deaths.
By contrast, alcohol was a contributing factor in just over 4.5% of all accidents but contributed to almost 1 in 4 fatalities. Likewise, speeding contributed to almost 7.5% of all accidents overall but also contributed to 1 in 4 fatalities.
Interestingly, drivers crossing into another lane of traffic accounted for more than 25% of all accidents. These types of accidents also accounted for well over half of all fatalities.
Drivers can drift into another person’s lane for a number of reasons, including driver fatigue or simple inattentiveness.
Victims of North Carolina accidents may be entitled to compensation
After an accident, a victim in the Charlotte area may be entitled to compensation if another driver caused the accident through carelessness. A victim may be able to recover compensation for items like medical expenses, loss income and other out-of-pocket costs.
Compensation for other non-economic damages like emotional distress and pain and suffering.