It is easy to forget that there was once a time when the motor vehicle accident fatality rate was incredibly bad. It was not an uncommon sight to see the rate above 50,000 deaths per year from 1966 to 1980. For the most part, the rate stayed in the 40,000s, which by today's standards is an incredibly high number. Lawmakers and safety advocates would be enraged if the number was that high.
Imagine that you are driving down the road one day, and you feel a sudden pain in your chest. "That's odd," you think. You're a relatively healthy person who keeps up with his or her doctor's appointments and checkups. So you keep driving thinking it's just a weird shooting pain. But it only persists and gets worse. Soon, you realize this isn't just a random ache or pain -- you are having a heart attack.
In some cases, car accidents are truly accidental. What we mean is: the drivers involved aren't doing anything negligent, and yet the two cars collide. And in many cases, these wrecks aren't serious in nature, though they do cause some damage to the vehicles. Still, the wreck can cause some serious headaches for the people involved.
It is hard to precisely identify exactly what causes a motor vehicle accident. This is because they happen all the time and under such varying circumstances. There are so many moving parts in any individual accident -- the speed of the vehicles, the setting of the crash, the mindset of the drivers involved, the time of day, the weather -- that pointing to any single factor does a disservice to the idea of fully investigating a crash.
A couple of months ago, we wrote a post about the rising fatality number in the state of California when it comes to car accidents. They have been on the rise since 2010, and now a new report from the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows that this rise isn't specific to California or any given state -- it is a national problem that needs to be addressed sooner rather than later.
An unfortunate and uncommon set of circumstances led to a fatal wreck that ultimately involved seven vehicles, claimed one life, and left multiple other people with injuries. The fatal crash occurred because of another crash that happened on Highway 4 last week. That wreck was minor in nature and no one was hurt. However, it backed up traffic on the highway and caused a chaotic scene.
In 2006 and 2007, California had a problem with traffic fatalities. 4,240 people died in traffic accidents in 2006, with 3,995 perishing in these wrecks the following year. It was in 2008 that the state really began to push that number down, and by 2010, the number of traffic fatalities per year fell below 3,000. It remained below that threshold until 2013, when it crept just above that limit to 3,107 fatalities in the year.
Pedestrians and bicyclists are two groups of people that are vulnerable out on the road. When cars collide with them, any pedestrian and/or bicyclist is likely to suffer terrible injuries. These injuries could change their lives forever, or leave them suffering and in immense pain for an extended period of time. And when this happens as a result of negligence on the part of a motor vehicle driver, then the legal consequences must reflect that.
A fatal crash today on Interstate 680 in Fremont, California left one person dead and the police investigating the crash. It appears that the driver of a smaller car crashed into the back of a semi truck, causing the fatal circumstances that left one dead in the sedan. Few details were released about the crash, probably because the police have not concluded their investigation into the matter. Little else is known about the crash.
Whenever you hear the common phrase "car accident," it is understandable to immediately think of a small, compact car. Not many people will think of a truck or a large vehicle when they hear this phrase, but that doesn't mean the possibility is absent from their mind. It is just that the phrase invokes an immediate thought of a smaller vehicle.