How often do you get in the car and go about your business? Every day? Several times a day, even?
If you're like most people, you're probably more focused on dropping off the kids, getting to work on time and running your errands than you are on the possibility of a crash. This is healthy. After all, who wants to spend time thinking about the bad things than can happen?
But, you may be surprised to learn just how often serious accidents do occur.
Injuries and deaths are more common than you think
Every year, the Ohio Department of Public Safety releases statistics about vehicle crashes throughout the state. The most recent report catalogs everything that happened in 2015.
In total, there were 302,037 reported car accidents in Ohio in 2015. Most of these were relatively minor, involving only property damage. But, there were still a shocking number of people who had their lives turned upside down by a serious crash:
- 42,407 people suffered non-incapacitating injuries
- 9,079 people suffered incapacitating injuries
- 1,110 people were killed
Most serious crashes can be traced to bad decisions
Even sadder is the fact that so many of these injuries and deaths could have been avoided if drivers had made better choices.
For example, 5,090 injuries and 316 deaths can be traced back to the use of alcohol. In fact, 31.17 percent of all fatalities can be linked back to a driver who was under the influence of alcohol. Think of all of the lives that would be different now, if these drivers had just gotten a ride instead.
Distraction, driving at unsafe speeds, failing to yield and improper lane changes were also listed as major causes of serious accidents.
Safety is up to all of us
The only way Ohio's roads will get safer is if we all make a better effort at making good decisions behind the wheel. Even one fatality or serious injury is one too many.