In Mississippi and across the United States, there is growing worry over a spike in fatal auto accidents during the first six months of 2021 when compared to 2020. Researchers are analyzing the data to try and determine why this is happening. At the same time, law enforcement in the state is discussing what it has seen in terms of driver behavior and how it could be contributing to accidents. Regardless of the details, those who have been involved in an accident and suffered injuries or lost a loved one should think about their options in the immediate aftermath.
NHTSA numbers show more auto accident fatalities in 2021
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the first half of 2021 has shown a 20% rise in fatalities on the road when compared to the previous year. In total, the numbers had 20,160 people losing their lives. At the same time in 2020, that was 17,020. The statistics are the worst in 15 years. A major factor in this increase is more drivers on the road in 2021 and fewer drivers having been on the road in 2020. The societal health situation was a prominent aspect of people driving less in 2020. Working remotely, children having school via the computer and the lack of activities due to mandated closures were a key part of that.
With fewer drivers on the road, people tended to be less vigilant about the law and basic safety practices. That included drivers speeding, being reckless, driving while distracted and driving under the influence. Because law enforcement was limited in its ability to enforce the law, these challenges increased. Mississippi is second in fatality rates in the U.S. with 31.24 deaths for every 100,000 licensed drivers. State law enforcement says that rural drivers are especially vulnerable to auto accidents because of distraction. With winding roads and a lack of light, this puts the pieces in place for crashes.
Experienced assistance can be important after an auto accident
Given these worrisome statistics and stories of what law enforcement officers are experiencing with auto accidents, it is understandable that drivers and passengers should be concerned about safety. After an accident, many issues will come to the forefront. That includes the extent of the injuries, medical costs, how much time will be lost at work, if there is long-term damage and more. When there is a fatality, the family left behind will want to know how the crash happened and what their alternatives are. To be fully prepared, it is critical to have professional help. Consulting with those experienced in all areas of personal injury is wise from the beginning.