How Traffic Accidents Affect Our Economy

In Katy, Texas we are reminded about how many people have died in motor vehicle accidents within our state by local TV broadcasters. At the end of the year, we get national figures tallied by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The numbers are not pretty. They are stark evidence that no matter how safe a driver you might be, it is more important than ever to have enough Katy car insurance.

Although the fatalities are tragic, there is a hidden side to motor vehicle accidents that many people do not even consider. That is the economic impact of traffic accidents in our country. In a recent CDC report based on data from 2005, it was reported that motor vehicle crashes cost every licensed driver in the United States as much as $500 per year. The national economy loses up to $100 trillion annually.

A little more than 70 percent of that amount comes from accidents involving people who wrecked motor vehicles. Another 12 percent is for motorcycle injuries and fatalities. Pedestrians are not far behind motorcycle riders with 10 percent of the total attributable to their deaths and injuries. That breaks down to an annual loss of $70 billion, $12 billion and $10 billion respectively.

Due to their vulnerability, the losses for motorcycle riders, their passengers and pedestrians were out of proportion to the frequency of accidents for motor vehicle drivers and passengers. Their costs were so much higher because they tend to be injured more seriously when they are involved in an accident. Motorcycles, according to the study, were involved in only 6 percent of injuries and deaths, but they were responsible for 12 percent of the expenses. The ratio was the same for pedestrians. They were involved in 5 percent of the total number of accidents, but they account for 10 percent of the costs. Katy auto insurance can defray a large part, if not all, of the costs you would incur in an accident while on our nation’s highways.

Teenagers and younger adults from the age of 15 to 25 were also disproportionately represented by the study. They accounted for about 28 percent of the injuries and fatalities, but they were responsible for 31 percent of the expenses. Both of those numbers are very high because that age group only makes up 14 percent of the nation’s population.

Other surprising findings from the CDC’s report included the following.

  • Males accounted for 74 percent of the costs and 70 percent of the deaths.
  • The costs associated with fatal accidents were $58 billion, and non-fatal hospitalizations cost the U.S. about $28 billion.
  • Medical care represented $17 billion of that amount. The remaining $11 billion is from the loss of production as the injured people recover from their injuries.

The CDC report said that most of the accidents included in their findings could have been avoided if communities would implement the following actions designed to reduce the number of fatalities and injuries caused by motor vehicle accidents.

  • Improve child safety seat distribution and include better instructions on how to use them properly
  • Enact programs that stress the need to use seat belts
  • Make it easier for police to enforce current seat-belt laws by stopping drivers who are not using their seat belts
  • Enact stricter helmet laws for motorcyclists and bicyclists
  • Initiate graduated driver’s license programs restricting teenaged drivers until they have more experience behind the wheel
  • Use sobriety checkpoints more frequently

Until such steps are implemented, the best you can do to protect yourself is to have good motor vehicle insurance. It is also critical for homeowners to have a good Katy home insurance policy to shield them from unexpected accidents or calamities and most insurance companies will give a discount for multiple policies.


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