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Summer Driving Fatalities: The Local Statistics

Posted on July 31, 2023

Deadly crashes happen more often in summer than during any other season, and, according to a U.S. Department of Transportation report, those numbers are higher than ever. How does the tri-state area fare in those figures? Read on.

In 2020 and 2021, more than 30% of all deadly crashes nationwide occurred between June and August. During that time, Pennsylvania had 2,213 fatalities, while New Jersey had 1,218 and Delaware had 236. Pennsylvania’s fatal summer crashes represented 30% of all deadly crashes in the commonwealth. New Jersey’s and Delaware’s represented 28% and 27% respectively.

As a result, New Jersey now joins Rhode Island and Minnesota as the top three states with the most significant increases in fatal summertime crashes. From 2018 to 2021, deadly crashes in New Jersey rose from 139 to 185, an increase of 33%.

According to the report, factors that lead to summertime crashes include an increase in volume, more teen drivers on the road, and more drunk driving incidents. Overall, alcohol-related fatalities have increased 22% from 2019 to 2021. Data also shows a 24% rise in speed-related fatalities during that same period. Fatal crashes occurred most often on local urban roads, followed by urban interstates.

More than 3,500 people were killed due to distracted driving in 2021, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Texting and technology weren’t the only distractions. The 2023 Travelers Risk Index revealed that intense emotions or stress affected 76% of drivers. Distractions can lead to risky behaviors, from driving at high speeds to frequent, intense braking and acceleration.

If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident due to someone’s negligence, consult a top Philadelphia attorney for motor vehicle accidents. Contact us to arrange a convenient time to speak.