Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers: Crash Reports FailJune 12, 2017
In order for law enforcement to effectively address the rise in traffic fatalities, they must be able to identify what caused the wreck. Unfortunately, current crash reports do not include codes for some of the most common causes of car accidents today, including drowsy driving, drugged driving, and distracted driving. In fact, a National Safety Council (NSC) review of crash reports from across the country found that all 50 states lacked the data needed for law enforcement to take steps to reduce these fatalities.
According to the NSC review, data codes for the following were missing from crash reports:
- All 50 states lacked codes to report the level of driver fatigue
- Twenty-six state reports did not have fields to report texting while driving
- Thirty-two states did not have fields for hands-free cell phone use
- Thirty-two states did not have fields that allowed police to specify types of drugs, including marijuana, if drug use is suspected
- Thirty-five states do not capture teen restrictions
- All 50 states fail to capture the use of advanced driver assistance technologies
- Forty-seven states do not have fields for the use of infotainment systems
The NSC announced the Road to Zero initiative, the goal of which is to eliminate traffic fatalities within 30 years. While this may sound like a lofty goal, it is one worth pursuing considering the fact that someone is injured every eight seconds, and killed every 15 minutes, in car accidents across the country. According to the president and CEO of the NSC, we need to understand why these crashes are happening so that we can make the right decisions about how to fix the problem.
Recent Spike in Traffic Fatalities
The NSC estimates that up to 40,000 people were fatally injured in car crashes in 2016, which is a six percent increase from 2015 and a 14 percent increase from 2014. This is the most significant two-year increase in fatalities since 1964. If laws and policies are to be more effective, there must be a better understanding of the issue. The NSC has identified 23 specific crash factors that should be included in every crash report. Kansas, Wisconsin, Maryland, Kentucky, and Nebraska are among the top five in capturing the most factors, with Arizona, California, Colorado, Maine, New York, and Virginia capturing the fewest crash factors.
The NSC is urging the traffic safety industry to take the following steps to ensure better, more comprehensive data collection on crash reports:
- Transition to electronic crash reports
- Update forms frequently in order to stay current with emerging issues that reflect new technologies
- Use an investigative approach to car crashes
- Use electronic data recorders to collect crash factors
Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Seek Maximum Compensation for Car Accident Victims
If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident, the Baltimore car accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton are on your side. We understand how traumatic car accidents can be and we will work tirelessly to determine who was responsible for causing the accident. We will continue to fight for your rights until we have obtained the financial compensation you deserve. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent injured victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.