Car accidents are ubiquitous and drivers take a risk of becoming involved in a crash wherever they travel. That being said, there are some states where the risk is higher than others. According to the Centers for Disease Control, Alabama is among the most dangerous places to travel in the nation, though this requires a bit of explanation.
Between 2003 and 2012, according to the CDC, the rate of death among motor vehicle occupants was 13.7 per 100,000 people, compared to the national rate of 7.0. And according to the Alabama Rural Health Association, the average rate of motor vehicle fatalities between 2001 and 2013 was 18.9 per 100,000 people, though this number accounts for all those injured in accidents, not just vehicle occupants.
Alabama has the seventh highest rate of motor vehicle occupant deaths in the national. The reason for the high death rate is not necessarily that drivers in Alabama are more careless in their driving behavior, though. Rather, the reason is that health care is harder to come by in Alabama’s rural areas, which are plentiful throughout the state. In fact, the rate of fatality among rural residents is over 50 percent higher than for urban residents here in Alabama.
In other words, one big reason the fatality rate is higher for crashes in rural areas is that serious injuries sustained in these accidents are more likely to lead to death due to lack of or inadequate medical care. As those working in emergency care know, the first hour after an accident is critical in terms of a crash victim’s chances for survival.
In our next post, we’ll continue speaking about this topic, and what those affected by the death of a loved one can do to seek compensation.