The cost of work loss and medical expenses is $41 billion for crash-related deaths nationally, according to a recently released study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Cost amounts were calculated on 2005 data, which is the most recent and accurate available on crash-related death costs.
Our Palm Beach injury attorneys know that the United Nations has proclaimed 2011 to 2020 the Decade of Action for Road Safety. Protecting lives on the world’s roadways is the goal in this 10-year quest.
The CDC released the study to go along with the Decade of Action for Road Safety campaign. The study found that half of the cost ($20.4 billion) was incurred in these 10 states: California ($4.16 billion), Texas ($3.50 billion), Florida ($3.16 billion), Georgia ($1.55 billion), Pennsylvania ($1.52 billion), North Carolina ($1.50 billion), New York ($1.33 billion), Illinois ($1.32 billion), Ohio ($1.23 billion) and Tennessee ($1.15 billion).
“Deaths from motor vehicle crashes are preventable,” said CDC Director Thomas R. Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “Seat belts, graduated driver’s license programs, child safety seats, and helmet use save lives and reduce health care costs.”
Regarding children, the study revealed the cost related to crash deaths from birth to 19 years old was roughly $856 million. Nevada (17 percent, $66 million) had the lowest percentage of crash-related death cost and Vermont (34 percent, $25 million) had the highest.
“It’s tragic to hear that anyone dies on our nation’s roads. But it’s especially so when the person who loses his or her life is a child or teenager,” said Linda Degutis, Dr. P.H., M.S.N., director, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. “Child passenger safety laws and comprehensive graduated driver licensing laws are proven to protect young lives. We encourage states to strengthen and enforce these laws to help keep more of our young people safe.”
The CDC’s Injury Center offers the following approaches to cutting medical cost and work loss by preventing crash-related deaths:
-Wearing seat belts in the front seat decreases the chance of a fatal injury by half, which makes not wearing a seat belt a primary reason to be stopped by law enforcement in most states.
-All children should be required to ride in age and size appropriate safety seats.
-Require a comprehensive graduated driver licensing (GDL) system for teen drivers. Studies show the staging process of GDL systems can reduce crashes for 16-year-old drivers by as much as 40 percent.
-All motorcycle riders should be required to wear an approved motorcycle helmet. Statistics indicate that wearing a helmet can reduce deaths in crashes by more than 33 percent and brain injuries by 69 percent.
“These preventable costs are a reflection of the terrible suffering of American families whose loved ones are killed or injured on the roads,” said Norman Mineta, chairman of Make Roads Safe North America and the longest-serving Secretary of Transportation in U.S. history. “Today, on the launch of the first-ever Decade of Action for Road Safety, occurring in 30 cities across our nation and 50 countries worldwide, it is time for all of us to take action to save lives at home and around the globe.”
If you have been injured in a car accident in Miami, Margate, Palm Beach or Fort Lauderdale, contact the Law Offices of Freeman, Mallard, Sharp & Gonzalez, LLC to be advised of your rights. Call today to make an appointment for a free consultation at 1-800-561-7777.