The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that about 2.36 million people were injured and 33,561 people died in traffic accidents across the United States in 2012. Rhode Island drivers could be interested in learning that while national traffic fatality statistics increased on 2011 records, state statistics declined slightly.
On the national spectrum, the NHTSA reports that 2012 injury figures increased 6.5 percent, or 145,000, from 2.22 million in 2011. This was the first increase in injury numbers since 1995. The total fatalities also increased 3.3 percent, or 1,082, from 32,479 deaths. Of the 1,082 additional deaths in 2012, 72 percent were reported between January and March, and more than 50 percent were motorcyclists and non-vehicle occupants. Furthermore, 10,322 of the total 2012 fatalities occurred in alcohol-related accidents, 4.6 percent, or 457, more than the 9,865 reported in 2011.
In Rhode Island, however, 66 deaths were reported in 2012, a 3 percent decline on the 66 fatalities reported in 2011. Of the 64 fatalities reported in 2012, 24 of them involved alcohol-impaired crashes, which is 7.7 percent fewer than the 26 alcohol-impaired deaths reported the previous year. This means that 38 percent of all Rhode Island traffic fatalities were related to drunk driving.
When a person is injured in an auto crash, the individual could be entitled to compensation, whether the individual was another driver, a passenger or a pedestrian. If a person dies in an auto crash, their surviving family members might be awarded compensation, depending on who is determined at fault. These victims could seek compensation from the appropriate insurance companies on their own or talk to lawyers about whether they have a case for compensation and how to file a claim.
Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, "2012 Motor Vehicle Crashes: Overview", October 17, 2014