As more Tampa Bay residents transition from working at home to working at the office and families venture out to enjoy what the Sunshine State offers, the number of travelers on area roads will increase. Unfortunately, this also increases the risk of fatal car accidents.

National Statistics

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) 2020 annual traffic crash data report, 38,824 lives were lost in traffic crashes nationwide - the highest number of fatalities since 2007. However, the number of police-reported crashes in 2020 decreased by 22%, and the estimated number of people injured declined by 17%. While crashes and traffic injuries declined overall, fatal crashes increased by 6.8%, making the fatality rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled 1.34, a 21% increase from the previous year and the highest since 2007.

Local Statistics

Unfortunately, the Tampa Bay area statistics paint an equally dismal picture. According to the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV), there were 36,173 vehicle accidents in Pasco and Hillsborough Counties in 2021, an average of 99 accidents per day. Of these accidents, 377 resulted in fatalities, and 26,296 reported injuries. If you're doing the math, that means 72% of these accidents resulted in injuries requiring medical attention. 

In Hillsborough County, 2021 was the deadliest ever on local roads. Its 272 fatalities from crashes (an average of 5.2 deaths weekly) is a 20% increase from 2020. Additionally, the number surpasses the previous high of 226 deaths in 2016 by 13%. 

In nearly half of fatal crashes, the drivers were engaged in at least one of the following risky behaviors: 

  • Speeding-related crashes, up 17%
  • Alcohol- or drug-related impairment, up 14%
  • Not wearing a seat belt, up 14%
Additionally, there is a presumption that overtaxed emergency workers may have had slower response times to accident scenes, resulting in a spike in fatalities.

Attorneys You Can Talk To!

Accidents happen, and when they do, you and your family will have questions about your rights and their impact on your life. The attorneys at Doran, Beam & Farrell, PA,  understand your concerns and are ready to answer any questions or address concerns that you may have about your claim. To schedule a FREE consultation, call us at (727) 846-1000 or complete our online contact form


Sources:
https://www.flhsmv.gov/safety-center/driving-safety/distracted-driving/
http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0300-0399/0316/Sections/0316.305.html 
https://www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/distracted-driving 
https://www.tampabay.com/news/transportation/2022/02/09/hillsborough-traffic-deaths-jumped-to-all-time-high-in-2021/