The New York Times recently published an article linking the surge in road fatalities to the pandemic citing that vehicle crashes and deaths started to rapidly increase the summer of 2020 and have continued to rise.
The article asserts that two years of isolation and disruption due to Covid-19 caused people to feel frustrated and angry, and these feelings are leading to more erratic behavior fueling the increase in vehicle crashes, violent crimes, and drug and alcohol abuse just to name a few.
Findings released by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) support this claim.
Earlier this month, the NHTSA released its early estimate of traffic fatalities for the first nine months of 2021. According to its analysis, the NHTSA projects that an estimated 31,720 people died in motor vehicle traffic crashes from January through September 2021, an increase of approximately 12% from first nine months of 2020. This projection reflects the highest number of fatalities since 2006 and the highest percentage increase in the Fatality Analysis Reporting System’s history.
The NHTSA also released behavioral research findings from March 2020 through June 2021 indicating that incidents of speeding and traveling without a seatbelt are higher than during pre-pandemic times.
DUIs are also on the rise despite the availability of ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft. According to the NHTSA, an alcohol-related death occurs every 52 minutes. Unfortunately, Georgia landed above the national average of annual traffic fatalities involving impaired drivers.
With these facts in mind, it is crucial not to panic but be aware of the dangers on the road. We must all remain vigilant, practice safe and defensive driving, and be prepared in the event of an accident.
If you are involved in a vehicular crash, especially involving an erratic or impaired driver, you may not know where to turn for help. An experienced Atlanta personal injury and car accident lawyer can help you understand all your legal options and guide you through the legal process. We encourage you to contact our office at The Baer Law Firm. Or call us at 404.THE.BAER (404.843.2237) for honest advice about your potential case.
Bryan Baer, principal and founding partner of The Baer Law Firm, has over 20 years of experience litigating catastrophic injury and medical malpractice cases. He has recovered millions of dollars in compensation for his clients, earning his membership in the Million Dollar Advocates Forum. Bryan has earned a Super Lawyer designation since 2016 as well as Georgia Trends Legal Elite. He has also received a Top 40 Under 40 designation from The National Trial Lawyers in 2014 and is one of America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators.