Car accidents are one of the top causes of deaths due to injury in the United States. Each year, there are more than 30,000 deaths on U.S. roads caused by motor vehicle collisions. This is a far greater number of deaths than occur on roads in Britain and throughout Europe, even after adjusting for population differences.
The high number of deaths in the U.S. resulted in a Telegraph article suggesting that Americans are putting their desire for personal freedom over appropriate road safety regulations. If more laws were passed to force Americans to make smart choices on the roads, there could perhaps be fewer fatalities.
Even without a law requiring or prohibiting specific behaviors, American drivers are expected to exercise reasonable caution at all times behind the wheel and to behave with the level of care that an average reasonable driver would show. If a motorist falls short of fulfilling this obligation and injures someone else, victims can take legal action to obtain compensation for damages. An experienced personal injury lawyer in Louisville at Shelton Law Group can help those who have been involved in a motor vehicle collision to pursue a claim for monetary damages.
Preventing Car Accident Injuries Through Driving Safety Laws
In Britain, there are only about 2,000 deaths in motor vehicle collisions each year. Britain’s smaller population helps to explain why fewer people die, but even adjusting for population, the risk of death due to car accidents in the United States is three times higher than the risk in Britain.
Part of the reason for the higher death toll is that Americans generally drive further than people in Britain and spend more time in their cars. However, the International Transport Forum has calculated the deaths per billion kilometers. In Britain, there were 3.9 deaths per billion vehicle kilometers compared with 6.8 people in the United States killed per billion kilometers.
This means that there has to be another reason for the higher death toll. The Telegraph indicates that one explanation is that driving rules in this country are more lax because motorists are much more concerned about protecting their personal freedoms.
Examples given include laws relating to seat belt use, motorcycle helmet use and cell phone use. Only 12 states in the United States have imposed a total ban on cell phone use while driving, despite the clearly established risks of distracted driving. Laws to ban cell phones and texting have been met with resistance, as have regulations that require motorcycle helmet use.
Today, seat belt laws are ubiquitous throughout the United States and apply to all drivers in every state except New Hampshire. However, this wasn’t always the case and even seat belt requirements used to be controversial. Not only that, but in 16 states, seat belt violations are a secondary offense and drivers are not able to be pulled over unless they are also violating other driving safety rules.
If laws don’t require good driver behavior, this puts the onus on motorists to make smart choices to avoid injuring themselves or others behind the wheel.
If you or a loved one was injured, car accident lawyers in Louisville can help. Call Shelton Law Group today at 888-761-7204 or visit http://robsheltonlaw.com.previewdns.com for a free case consultation.