Missouri: deadly auto accident rates soaring

From teens to elderly drivers, auto accident death rates were up all over Missouri in 2016. According to an STL Today article in December that year, fatal crashes increased among drivers in “nearly all age groups.”  The jump in death rates was up across the state, although St. Louis did have a “slightly” larger increase.

Safety experts quoted in the article say there was no clear reason for big jump in deaths.  The usual culprits caused it – distracted driving, speeding, drunk driving and ignoring seat belts. The death rate rose so fast in 2016, they expected 900 people would loses their lives on Missouri roads, when the final count was available, making the two-year increase the largest in “more than 20 years.”

By the end of June 2017, the death toll had dropped “six percent” compared to June 2016, according to Missouri’s ABC affiliate.  Despite the decrease, Missouri law enforcement officials still fear another jump in the death toll as lack of seat belt use and distracted driving continues.

Sixty percent of those who died on Missouri roads in 2015, weren’t belted in, according to a Missouri Highway Patrol Captain, who also noted that causes for the big jump in Missouri’s 2016 death rate were about “the same for the 27-plus years I’ve been around.”

Missouri’s 2016 death rate tracked the national rate

According to CNN,  studies show that more people die on U.S. roads than in other “high-income countries,” in the world.  The 2016 CNN report was based on statistics collected by the World Health Organization and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

The National Safety Council (NSC) estimated “as many as 40,000 people” died in car crashes nationwide in 2016 – a “6%” increase in traffic deaths over 2015 and a 14% increase over 2014.  It was the largest increase in fatalities in 53 years.  The toll is driving up insurance costs, according to the Insurance Information Institute.  Claims increased “2.6 percent” and “collision claim severity” rose “8.2 percent” during the first quarters of 2014 and 2016.  The U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) attributes the high U.S. death rate, compared to other countries, to “alcohol use, speeding and lack of seatbelt use, especially for children.”

St. Louis Attorney Wyatt Wright helps victims of reckless drivers

If a bad driver hurt you or a loved one, call St. Louis car accident lawyer Wyatt Wright.  He is one of America’s top trial lawyers.  CNN celebrated his 2014 Litigator Award during prime time.  That honor, and others he has received over the last 40 years, are based top dollar awards for clients.  Less than 1% of lawyers ever qualify for these honors.  Calls and evaluations are free.  Fees, agreed upon in advance, are only due when the firm wins your case.

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