On June 12, 2021, a Catawba County woman died in a collision on N.C. 127 near Valley Field Road. Police charged the at-fault driver with failing to reduce speed and misdemeanor death by vehicle. This death is part of a disturbing trend in North Carolina and the United States, which saw traffic accident deaths increase in 2020 despite less overall driving due to COVID 19. Thirty-eight thousand six hundred eighty people were estimated to have died in car accidents in the United States in 2020, the most significant number of deaths since 2007.
Nationally, traffic accident deaths increased 7% in 2020 as compared to 2019. In North Carolina, the increase was even greater; 1622 North Carolinians died in 2020 compared to 1479 in 2019, a 9.7% increase. Deaths from high-speed crashes accounted for over 400 deaths in North Carolina in 2020. This is the largest reported total in over a decade.
Most shocking is that Black citizens saw a 23% increase in traffic deaths in 2020. As outlined in a report recently released by the U.S. Department of Transportation National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, of all the demographic groups monitored, Black citizens saw the single most significant increase in deaths in 2020. Experts suggest this trend because Black neighborhoods are less likely to have crosswalks, warning signs, and other safety measures designed to reduce accidents. Black communities often suffer from poor roads, dangerous proximity to high-speed limit routes, posted speed limits of over 35 miles per hour, and a lack of public transportation.
If you or a family member find yourself affected by this disturbing trend, the car accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor in Hickory, North Carolina, are ready to assist you.