Pennsylvania has over 120,000 miles of roads and highways. Both the State of Pennsylvania and local counties and municipalities govern these roads. There were 128,888 automobile crashes in Pennsylvania in 2017 – more than one for every mile of pavement. These crashes varied by type, but affected 80,612 people, taking the lives of 1,137 of them. This roughly averages out to three deaths every day in the Pennsylvania. The more people are aware of these statistics, the more they can drive with caution to avoid becoming a statistic in a fatal accident.
Crashes by Type
There are several different types of crashes that take place on Pennsylvania roadways. Although any accident is possible, there are certain types that occur more frequently. For instance, The most accidents involved a single vehicle hitting an object, such as a tree or guide rail, more than any other type of crash. Pedestrian/vehicle accidents occur less often but cause the third highest number of fatalities. Here are the crash and fatality statistics by type in Pennsylvania.
- Hit an object – This resulted in 29.5% of all crashes, and 35.4% fatalities.
- Angle – This resulted in 27.2% crashes, and 21.7% fatalities.
- Rear end – This resulted in 22.5% crashes, 7.1% fatalities.
- Sideswipe – This resulted in 6.5% crashes, and 5.5% fatalities.
- Hit Pedestrian – This resulted in 3.7% of collisions, and 12% fatalities.
- Head on – This resulted in 3.7% crashes, and 10.7% fatalities.
- Other – This resulted in 7.6% crashes, and 7.7% fatalities.
Passenger vehicles were also the most common type of vehicle involved in collisions. Motorcycle accidents have decreased since 2016.
All Crashes and Fatalities
Thankfully, automobile collisions in Pennsylvania are not always fatal. The majority of crashes do not result in death, but even minor/major injuries can be devastating for friends and family. Fortunately, the majority of crashes also do not result in injuries. In addition, the 1,137 fatalities in 2017 was the lowest recorded in 90 years.
This isn’t the only trend in Pennsylvania. Other states report similar trends in the last five years, showing an overall increase in the total number of crashes but a decrease in injuries and fatalities. Injuries include suspected serious injury, suspected minor injury, possible injury, and unknown severity. Here are more specific trends concerning fatalities and injuries.
- Fatalities – The number of pedestrian vehicle crash fatalities remained roughly the same since 2013 at 150, though there was a slight increase in 2017 to 166.
- Injuries – The number of pedestrian injuries also decreased from 2013 (4,413) to 2017 (4,106).
- Fatalities – Motorcycle crash fatalities remained roughly the same from 2013 (181) to 2017 (185).
- Injuries – The number of injuries decreased from 2013 (3,322) to 2017 (3,052).
- Fatalities: The average annual number of bicycle crash fatalities increased from 11 to 21 since 2013.
- Injuries: The annual number of bicycle crash injuries decreased from 2013 (1,374) to 2017 (1,127).
- The number of alcohol-related crash fatalities decreased from 2013 (381) to 2017 (293).
- Speed-related crash fatalities decreased from 2013 (322) to 2017 (309).
Heavy truck crashes
- Heavy truck crash fatalities increased slightly from 2013 (147) to 2017 (155).
Deaths per 100 million vehicle miles
- Deaths per 100 million vehicle miles travelled significantly decreased from 2013 (1.21) to 2017 (1.12).
Common causes of car crashes
Adverse weather conditions, work sites, and nearby objects are only a few of causes for crashes in Pennsylvania. The most common types of crashes include:
- Weather-related crashes – Rain and snow caused 18.3% of the total crashes, and 11.3% of fatalities.
- Crashes involving vehicle defects – Tire/wheel related defects caused 37.7% of crashes, and brake-related defects caused 30%.
- Work zone crashes – 43% of work zone crashes resulted in fatalities in 2017.
- Crashes with roadside objects and animals – Hitting trees, shrubs or utility poles caused the most crashes with objects, approximately 13%.
- Crashes with trains and motor vehicles – These are the least common type of crash and resulted in 15 fatalities over the past from 2013 to 2017.
If you or a loved one suffers a serious injury in a road accident in Pennsylvania, speak to an experienced Philadelphia car accident attorney can ensure the protection of your rights and help you recover compensation for your injuries.