There are over a billion cars globally, with the US registering 273.6M vehicles in 2018. The figure keeps increasing since cars have remained to be the favorite mode of transport. The number of car accidents is also high because of different reasons such as negligence, distracted driving, and bad weather. These accidents often lead to severe injuries like head injuries, brain damage, bone fractures, etc. You might also lose a loved one.  If you are injured in an accident, get in touch with us at the San Diego Personal Injury Law Firm to help you seek compensation. In this article, we will discuss the general fatal crash statistics in car accidents.

Risk Factors Associated with Fatal Car Accidents

You are vulnerable to being involved in an accident, although some individuals are more prone to being injured. Some of the risk factors include:

Socio-Economic Status

Most car accidents happen in areas of low income. The World Health Organization reported that people from low-income backgrounds are more prone to accidents than those with high socio-economic backgrounds. It also happens that most drivers speed while using rural roads, leading to fatalities if an accident occurs.

Age of the Motorist

People between the ages of 0-29 years are more likely to be involved in fatal car accidents than those above 30. Those below the age of 30 are usually reckless while driving, whereas those above the age of 30 years are more careful while using the roads. Older people are keener to observe the traffic rules and are therefore less likely to get involved in accidents.

Sex of the Driver

According to the World health organization, young males below 25 years are more prone to getting involved in fatal car accidents than the female gender of the same age. Men will always try to prove their driving skills and sometimes will act negligently when driving. That is not the case with the female gender because they are usually careful and do not want to get themselves in trouble.

Medical Conditions

There are medical conditions that may lead to fatal car accidents in California. A good example is a physical impairment and poor eyesight. These are medical conditions that can increase your risk of getting involved in an accident. Research has shown that drivers above the age of 50 are more likely to cause an accident due to poor eyesight or other physical impairment.

Lack of Experience

The drivers who operate the vehicle without much experience are more likely to cause an accident. This includes both the male and the female. Drivers below the age of 29 are more prone to getting themselves in trouble for causing accidents due to lack of experience, especially during the festive seasons when they want to move to different places.

Time of the Day

A fatal car accident happens during the evening hours, between 4.00 pm-7.00 pm. At that time, there is always a rush because most people are heading home. Around the same hours, the vision is usually affected by lights from other motorists, and the driver may therefore fail to see clearly and will end up causing an accident.

Causes of Fatal Car Accidents

Many factors can lead to fatal car accidents. They include:

Driving at a High Speed

Speeding is a significant reason why fatal car accidents happen in California. It accounts for about 30% of all the deadly accidents that occur in a year. Many drivers usually ignore the speed limit rule forgetting that high-speed kills. High speed does not give the driver time to react if an accident happens and will cause an accident that will leave any party involved with severe injuries. In worst cases, the accident that occurs as a result of high speed may lead to death.

Poor Weather Conditions

Certain weather conditions can make the driver cause an accident. Fog, mist, rain, and snow can highly contribute to fatal car accidents. The weather conditions affect visibility, and the river will not see what is in front of them. They will end up causing a rear-end collision that is usually common when the weather is poor.

Distracted Driving

Different types of distractions can make a driver cause an accident due to impaired driving. The distractions caused by phones are a concern for road safety. The report shows that the drivers who use their phones while driving are four times likely to cause a fatal car accident. The use of the phone while driving reduces the time that the driver can react in case of an emergency.

Driving While Impaired

Statistics show that 29 people die every day as a result of drunk driving. The rate is equivalent to a death every 53 minutes. Driving when impaired has contributed to around 30% of the fatalities caused, making it approximately 113,000 deaths from the past 12 years.

Red Lights

There is an instance where the drivers want to beat the red light. It is usually unfortunate that many drivers cause fatal accidents because they are generally in a rush. According to the National Coalition for Safer Roads (NCSR), there are some statistics and facts about the accidents that happen at the red lights. They are;

  • That most drivers usually run red lights in the afternoon hours
  • On Friday, most drivers generally violate the red light rule because they want to rush home for the weekend
  • On Sundays, the accident that happens as a result of violating the red law are usually lower
  • Numerous red light violations occur during the festivity, and therefore, the rate of red-light accidents is generally high.

Driver Fatigue

There will be a high risk of an accident if the driver is tired. Fatigue has contributed to around 4% of the number of fatal car accidents that happen. You will be eligible for fair compensation if you get involved in an accident and sustain serious injuries or under losses due to the accident. That will be possible with the help of an attorney who is knowledgeable about the injury laws.

Inadequate Law Enforcement, especially on Traffic Rules

There are traffic rules that, when enforced, the number of cars getting involved in accidents would reduce. Child restraints, speed limits, drunk driving, and wearing seat belts are among the rules that many drivers overlook. Ignoring the rules means that the drivers do not care about other motorists or even pedestrians, and their negligent acts lead to fatal accidents.

Aggressive Driving

It is unsafe to drive where the driver looks down on the traffic rules and regulations set. Aggressive driving contributes to 65% of the accidents that happen. The accident's impact resulting from aggressive driving is usually fatal because the drivers are always in a rush and don't care about the other road users.

Unsafe Change of Lanes

At some point when driving, a driver will need to change from one lane to the other. If the drivers do not take extra care when changing lanes, they can cause accidents out of negligence. It is essential that the drivers lookout for any signal before changing lanes. If there are no signals, the drivers should change lanes with care. If you sustain injuries due to unsafe changing of lanes, you can file for compensation from the liable party because it will be evident that the driver was at fault.

Usafe Vehicles

Safe vehicles reduce the severity of injuries you are likely to sustain if you get involved in a car accident. If manufacturing and production standards are met, then there would be many lives saved from it. Poor manufacturing of cars increases the risk of fatal injuries because the car can fail or break down at any time when on the road. Such accidents are usually severe and catastrophic injuries that require compensation will be sustained.

Fatal car accidents can be reduced by:

  • Having the number of teen drivers reduced
  • Driving with extra care if the weather conditions are not favorable
  • Following the set guidelines for traffic rules
  • Avoid speeding
  • Getting plenty of sleep
  • Not drinking while driving and
  • Not using a cellphone when driving.

Types of Car Accidents

Car accidents occur anytime, anywhere, and in diverse situations. The severity of injuries depends on how the accident occurred and the crash's impact. Common types of car accidents are:

  • The rear-end collisions
  • Side-impact collisions
  • Head-on collisions and
  • Rollover accidents

Rear-End Collision

It’s one of the common types of accidents that happen in California. It occurs when a car crashes into the other one in front of it. Rear-end collision contributes to a certain percentage of the total deaths that occur in California. They are a fatal type of accident because they mostly happen if the driver behind the other vehicle doesn’t see one in front, or a negligent act can lead to the same.

Side-Impact Collision

It occurs when one vehicle is hit on one or both sides. Side-impact collisions usually happen, especially in parking lots and at intersections. Insurance Institute of Highway Safety reported that the side-impact crash accounts for 25% of the number of occupants' deaths.

Head-on Collision

A head-on collision is fatal. They occur when vehicles hit each other from the front side. The impact the cars crash into each other leads to fatalities or sustaining severe and long-term injuries. They are not common types of accidents and contribute to 2% of the total number of crashes.

Rollover Accidents

It is a complex and violent type of accident that happens in San Diego and California at large. It is caused majorly by reckless driving, but other contributing factors are road conditions, poor environment, and driver’s behavior. Most rollover accidents result in many fatalities; hence the high percentage of death contributed by this type of accident. Statistics from Safer Car show that rollover accidents contribute to 35% of the total deaths that occur.

Deaths Resulting from Car Accidents

The report from the Association for Safe International Road Travel shows that around 1.35 million people die in road accidents every year. The report also indicates that about 700 people die each day as a result of road carnage. Road accidents contribute to a high percentage of deaths in the world compared to other causes of deaths such as diseases. There are vulnerable people such as motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians who contribute to 50% of the deaths due to road accidents.

In the year 2019, around 3563 deaths resulted from car accidents, as the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reported. Out of these numbers of deaths, a high proportion was contributed by passenger cars.

Injuries Sustained from Car Accidents

Most of the personal injuries sustained are a result of car accidents. There are around 20-50 million people who sustain severe and long-term injuries from car accidents. Some people also end up with disabilities and, in worst cases, death results. The World Health Organization reported that many countries spend a lot of their gross Domestic Products to cover the medical expenses resulting from car accidents. One of the common injuries that people sustain is whiplash, an abrupt head and neck movement. Whiplash occurs mainly in rear-end collision accidents, resulting in muscle and neck ligament damage.

The Road Ecology Center report reported that the average number of car accidents in California is 500 every day, with 400 people sustaining severe injuries.

Safety Devices to Prevent Fatalities in Car Accidents.

There are safety devices meant to reduce the fatalities and the severity of injuries sustained when a car accident occurs. Some of the safety devices are:


It is a requirement by the Federal Government that manufacturers should install driver and passenger airbags. The airbags prevent fatalities and severe injuries by inflating in case of a crash. That way, you are protected in a way, and the impact will be reduced. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, airbags can effectively reduce fatalities and injuries to people above the age of 13.

Safety Belts

Seatbelts save approximately 14955 lives in the years 2017. Therefore, you are at risk of death if you do not fasten your safety belt while traveling. A combination of safety belts and airbags can significantly reduce the crash's impact when a car accident occurs. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, seat belts can reduce the risk of fatal injuries by 45% for front-seat passengers. If you fail to fasten your belt, you will likely be thrown from the car when an accident happens.

Safety Seats for the Children

Seatbelts and airbags are not effective for children in the car. To reduce the risk of sustaining fatal injuries by the children, cars should be fitted with safety seats, especially for those below the age of 5.

Where and When Most Crashes Happen

Car accident statistics indicate that crashes usually happen during the night and the weekend in California. The statistics showed that 6.3% of crashes occurred at night, while 4-8 % of crashes happened during the daytime in the year 2016. The statistics also showed that 5.5% of the fatal car accidents occur during the week, while 5-9% happened during the weekend. Most people believe that fatal car accidents occur in California City, which may be the case. That may be true that there are many road users and motorists who use the California city roads. However, most fatal accidents happen in rural areas. The reason is that the driver uses high speed while driving in rural areas. They do that because they are aware that there are many motorists in rural areas. Accidents that happen in rural areas are usually fatal due to the high speed. Most of the rural car accidents that occur are generally head-on collisions and hitting non-moving objects.

Number of Crashes, Injuries, and Deaths in California

Different organizations are dedicated to collecting data on fatal accidents in California. According to safety, the number of traffic fatalities was 8/3%. The value was lower than that of the year 2017. The statistics show that the number of deaths reduced from 3884 to 3563. The report also indicated that the fatalities caused by car accidents were at a rate of 9 per 100,000 people in 2018. It is, therefore, evident that car accidents are the primary cause of deaths in California.

In California, Statistics show that in 2018, 33654 fatal car accidents resulted in over 36500 people. Out of the accidents that happened during that year, 1096 people died from accidents that resulted from alcohol impairment. The results were proved by the tests done, where 42% of the drivers who caused the accidents tested positive for drugs.

There are also fatalities caused to bicyclists by car. The report shows that bicycle fatalities that resulted from car accidents increased from 145 in 2017 to 155 deaths in 2018. For pedestrians, statistics show that most of them lost lives in traffic the same year, 2018.

Motorcyclist fatalities from car accidents in 2018 488, a lower figure than the previous year, 2017, were 578. It is a 15.57% decrease for the two years.

Settlement Amount for A car Accident Claim

When you are injured in an accident in San Diego, you have a civil right to file for compensation for the damages and injuries you will sustain. Some of the expenses you can file a claim include medical expenses, lost wages, and vehicle repairs. Settlement for a car accident in California ranges from $10,000 to $100,000. Depending on the type of case, the value of settlement may vary drastically. Therefore, you need to have an attorney to help you file for a fair claim to cover the losses and expenses incurred.

What You Should Do After an Accident

When you find yourself involved in a car accident, you should do:

Seek Medical Attention

You must seek medical attention to get treatment for the injuries sustained. Immediately after the accident, you find that many victims do not feel much pain despite the physical injuries sustained. Seeking medical attention helps in identifying any internal injuries to the organs as well as treating physical injuries.

File a Report

You should file a police report to help in the investigation process. Your attorney will also use the police report to add on the evidence for your compensation claim.

Collect any Information that will help in The Compensation Claim

If you can talk after the accident, you should collect as much information as possible from the people around you. They include the eyewitnesses who saw the accident happen.

Take Photographs

If you are in a position to take photographs, you should do so. The pictures can help your attorney gather as much information as possible to build up strong evidence for your claim. If not, you can ask someone else to take the photos on your behalf. The photos show the accident's specific location and can also help determine the cause of the accident.

Document Injuries You Have Sustained

It will be easy for the judge to calculate the amount you should receive as documented compensation for your injuries. A medical report is also an essential document that will help determine the severity of injuries you sustained.

Contact your Attorney

Contacting your attorney will help in the investigation and collect as much information as possible to have your injuries and damages compensated. A well-experienced attorney understands the injury laws and will do all it takes to have you compensated.

Find A Car Accident Attorney Near Me

Car accidents are prevalent in San Diego, and accidents are usually preventable in most cases. If the drivers could become more careful in the operation of their vehicles, there would be fewer fatalities. When injured in a fatal accident due to someone else negligence, you should have an attorney to help in the compensation claim. San Diego Personal Injury Law Firm has qualified attorneys who can help you out. Our attorneys have successfully represented victims in injury cases, and most victims have received fair compensation for their injuries. Call us today at 619-478-4059 to have your case reviewed professionally.