According to NJ State Police statistics, there were 607 fatalities from car accidents in New Jersey in 2016, an eight-percent increase from 2015 and the most deaths since 2011.
This is sobering news given that in 2013, the number of car accident fatalities in the state fell to a 20-year low.
The question is: What are the reasons that the number of fatalities increased in 2016, and what can state officials due to make sure accident deaths don’t rise again in 2017?
Reasons For New Jersey Car Accident Fatalities In 2016
There are several reasons why the number of car accident fatalities increased in 2016, including:
- Driver Distraction – this has become one of the leading causes of car accidents throughout the U.S., as the rates of drivers who text while driving, chat with other passengers, talk on a mobile phone, and stare at GPS devices continue to grow.
- Drugged Driving – drugged driving is becoming more common in New Jersey, which isn’t a surprise because the state is experiencing a heroin/opiate crisis that is quickly reaching the stage where the governor wants it declared as a statewide emergency.
- Driver Fatigue – this is more common among commercial truck drivers who spend 10 hours or more driving without a break, but fatigue has also plagued drivers of passenger vehicles. Fatigue significantly reduces a driver’s concentration and focus, and even if a driver doesn’t fall asleep behind the wheel, he or she may still lack the reaction time necessary to avoid dangerous behaviors such as drifting into an adjacent lane.
One of the main focuses of law enforcement efforts in New Jersey to reduce accident fatalities is to increase awareness that safety belts save lives. Drivers and passengers who don’t wear safety belts are far more likely to be ejected from their seats during a collision, which often results in death.
State officials are also strictly enforcing texting-while-driving laws, and recommending that drivers obey the speed limit to avoid causing accidents.
It’s More Than Just a Legal Claim
The statistics regarding New Jersey fatal car accidents are sobering, and despite your best efforts to practice safe driving habits, you may still be injured in an accident that wasn’t your fault. After that happens, your life may grind to a halt as you deal with recovery, medical bills, loss of time at work, and pain and suffering. Filing a claim with an experienced law firm, such as the team at Rosner Law Offices, P.C., is not merely a legal action, it is the first step toward achieving peace of mind, and we are proud to stand as your advocates. Please call us today at (856) 502-1655 for a free legal consultation.