As 35,000 to 40,000 fatal car accidents occur in the United States every year, it’s clear that driving a car is dangerous. For a lot of people, driving may be one of the most dangerous things they do each day. Some reasons for these accidents include:
- Human error: The most significant factor in road accidents is human error. This includes behaviors such as speeding, reckless driving, distracted driving (e.g., texting or using a phone while driving), impaired driving (due to alcohol or drugs) and fatigue.
- Poor road design: Roads with inadequate design elements can be dangerous. Factors like sharp turns, blind intersections, lack of proper signage, narrow lanes and poorly marked lanes can contribute to accidents.
- Traffic congestion: Heavily congested roads can make accidents more likely. Contributing reasons include frequent lane changes, cars that are very close to one another – reducing reaction times – and stop-and-go traffic. High traffic volume can also lead to road rage and aggressive driving.
So which roads carry the greatest level of danger, and where should drivers be most wary of these risks?
The deadliest road in the state
Some accounts point to I-95 North as the deadliest road in Massachusetts. Specifically, the stretch from S. Main St. to Exit 21, which is only 4.3 miles long, saw six fatalities resulting from five different accidents that occurred between 2018-2020. This factored out to 1.2 fatal crashes per mile in the period studied.
Another dangerous stretch of road is Main Street in Brockton, from Perkins Avenue to Stonehouse Hill Road. This is an even shorter distance of just 3.2 miles. But it still led to five fatalities in five different accidents, for a rate of 1.5 fatal accidents per mile. If you look at the rate instead of the total, it could be argued that this is actually the most dangerous stretch of road in the state.
Finally, drivers should be wary on I-495 North. Specifically, when between Exit 14 and Exit 15, on a stretch of road that is only 0.4 miles long, they have an incredibly high crash fatality risk. There were three fatal accidents on that stretch of road during the period of study, resulting in 7.2 fatal accidents per mile.
Of course, drivers may not have the option to avoid specific roads, and there are potentially fatal dangers on any road, caused by some of the factors noted above. As a result, it’s important for everyone to understand that should they experience road-related harm, compensation may be available. Seeking legal guidance is a good way to clarify one’s rights and options.