Mississippi has some of the most worrisome traffic accident statistics in the nation. Earlier this year, this blog noted a study that found that our state has the highest rate of car accidents per capita. Another study shows that Mississippi has among the nation's highest fatality rates in traffic accidents.
The study, by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Highway Loss Data Institute, shows that there were 558 fatal car accidents in Mississippi in 2013 (the most recent year for which statistics were available) resulting in 613 deaths. Factoring in the state's population of just less than 3 million, researchers calculated that Mississippi had 20.5 traffic deaths per 100,000 people.
The only state with a higher rate in 2013 was Montana. North Dakota's rate was also 20.5. All other states had significantly lower rates, including Mississippi's neighbors Louisiana (15.2) and Tennessee (15.3).
There could be many reasons why Mississippi's fatality rates are so high, and no doubt safety advocates will debate the best ways to improve safety for many years to come. In the meantime, Mississippi drivers have to drive with care, knowing the dangers that they face themselves, and that they pose to other people.
As these statistics suggest, too many drivers fail to exercise that kind of care. When someone is killed in a car accident caused by the negligence of another driver, their family members may seek compensation for lost income, medical expenses and other damages through a wrongful death lawsuit. A personal injury attorney can advise grieving families on their legal options.
Source: Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Highway Loss Data Institute, "General Statistics," last visited Aug. 6, 2015