Maryland parents have a lot to think about. There's the rough economy, job security, the down housing market, and making sure their children get a good education. Then, there's the daily grind of getting kids to and from school as well as their numerous extra-curricular activities. When teens finally get their Maryland driver's licenses, it can come as both a relief to schedule-frazzled parents -- and another reason for worry.
Parents who think about their children's safety in motor vehicles on Maryland's highways, city streets, and rural back roads have cause for concern.
According to the Maryland Department of Transportation, Motor Vehicle Administration,
"traffic crashes are the number one killer of people between the ages of 4 to 34.… Each year traffic crashes kill more people in Maryland than homicides."
In fact, Maryland public safety officials now use the term "crashes" rather than "car accidents," "truck accidents," "motorcycle accidents," etc. -- as they believe 90 percent of motor vehicle crashes can, in fact, be prevented. The latest data posted on the Maryland MVA website (covering 2003 through 2007) estimates a five-year average of 580 fatal crashes in Md. per year.
(Note: That yearly average of "580 fatal crashes" may now be a bit high, as fatal traffic accidents have been declining in Maryland and nationally. More recent statistics for Maryland support this trend. NHTSA reported 591 total traffic deaths in Maryland in 2008 and 547 deaths in 2009.)
However the Maryland MVA goes on to report statistics that show we still have a long way to go to reach zero deaths on our state's roadways. For the year 2007…
> Maryland experienced 100,943 motor vehicle crashes
> More than 50,000 people were injured and 615 killed in those automobile crashes
As experienced Baltimore County, car crash injury lawyers, we know of both the human and the financial toll these Md. accidents take on families.
The High Costs of Car Accidents
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report this summer estimating the total cost in the U.S. due to motor vehicle accidents to be an astounding $99 billion a year -- or more than $500 for every man, woman, and child in the U.S. The costs incurred during motor vehicle accidents include medical care, emergency and police services, property damage, lost productivity, and quality of life. Cars and light trucks made up 70 percent of the accidents, followed by motorcycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and bicycle accidents.
It's sobering to think that the number-one killer of kids and young adults in Maryland is motor vehicle crashes. Despite national and state campaigns to reduce that deadly toll, we still have more work to do to make driving in Maryland safer for everyone.
A Baltimore car accident injury attorney works with families when a loved one has been killed or injured in a Maryland car crash. An experienced personal injury lawyer is an absolute must, when dealing with the seasoned insurance executives and top-notch attorneys typically assigned to defend these most serious of claims.
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