Study Finds California’s Urban Roads Have Lower Risk Of Accidents

.tags A new study has few surprises for California car accident attorneys. The study finds that persons who meet with an accident on urban roads have a much higher chance of surviving an accident that those who meet with accidents on rural roads.

A report in USA Today finds that some of the most dangerous states in the country like Montana, Wyoming and Mississippi have more rural roads. The biggest difference between these dangerous states and safer ones like Washington is the higher number of rural roads. According to the USA Today report, even in states that have low accident fatalities, the accident rate on rural roads is approximately twice as high as that on urban roads.

The USA Today report ranked states based on accident deaths. California with 3,081 deaths in 2009 has a death rate of 8.3 per 100,000 population. That is a bad rate, but it is much worse than a state like Mississippi, which had a death rate of 20.7 per 100,000 population in 2009. North Dakota had 21.63 deaths per 100,000 population, and Wyoming had a staggering rate of 24.6 deaths for every 100,000 population in 2009.

The report underlines the stark difference in the chances of survival when a person is involved in a rural road accident, versus a person in an accident on an urban road. The safest states in the country are those that have more urban roads with lower speed limits, and better design and engineering. The most dangerous states are those that that have plenty of two-lane rural roads that increase the risk of an accident.

Rural roads suffer from a number of deficiencies that increase the risk of being involved in an accident. For instance, many of these are two-lane roads, which increase the risk of potentially fatal or serious head-on crashes. Besides, there hasn’t been a lot of time spent on safety engineering and design of many rural roads. Rural roads also tend to be more badly maintained that their urban counterparts.

Many safety organizations don’t believe that states that have more rural roads should automatically have higher accident injury and fatality rates. For instance, the Governor’s Highway Safety Association believes that other factors, like whether the state has managed to implement anti-drunk driving laws, and has strong seatbelt laws are bigger factors in deciding whether the roads are safer. Besides, strict motorcycle helmet laws and child restraint systems, the Governor’s Highway Safety Association believes, play a bigger role in deciding whether individuals survive a crash with minimal injuries.

The National Transportation Safety Board also urges states to adopt more safety measures. These include stronger anti-drunk driving measures, stronger laws related to seatbelt use, stronger laws related to child occupant protection, motorcycle helmet laws and laws eliminating distracted driving.