Connecticut has 45,916 miles of road. From 2018 to 2020, 787 motor vehicle accidents on these miles of roads and highways resulted in fatalities. However, it is not just drivers and passengers who are at risk on the roads of the Constitution State.
In 2022, pedestrian and wrong-way deaths contributed to over 300 fatal accidents. This is the most in over five years.
As you can see from the statistics, the roads of Connecticut have witnessed a concerning number of fatal vehicle accidents. Even though the numbers are concerning, what is even more worrisome is the impact of the fatalities on family, friends, and the community. Beyond personal tragedy, there is also an economic aspect of these accidents. Fatal car accidents can leave families with financial burdens and economic instability.
At Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers, we understand the impact these accidents can have. Our legal team is dedicated to helping accident victims and their families recover the compensation they deserve.
Here, you can learn more about the causes of fatalities on Connecticut roadways, how to stay safe, and how our Connecticut car accident lawyer can help you file a claim.
Statewide Data on Fatal Accidents
The total number of road-related fatalities fluctuates throughout the years. Since 2015, the following data has been recorded:
- 2015: 270 deaths
- 2016: 304 deaths
- 2017: 281 deaths
- 2018: 293 deaths
- 2019: 249 deaths
- 2020: 299 deaths
- 2021: 298 deaths
CTDOT estimates that at the end of 2023, the total road-related fatalities will sit at approximately 270.
Common Causes of Roadway Deaths in Connecticut
Many fatal accidents on Connecticut roads stem from preventable causes. Some of the most common causes of fatal accidents on Connecticut roadways include:
The total fatalities that involved an intoxicated driver increased 14% between 2021 and 2022. This completely preventable cause of accidents was linked to 31.5% of the fatal accidents in the state in 2022.
While the legal limit for driving with alcohol in your system is a BAC of 0.08%, this does not mean you should get behind the wheel after just one or two drinks. Alcohol affects everyone differently. Just two drinks may increase your BAC to 0.02%, which is when your driving skills and reflexes are affected.
Speeding accounted for 30.9% of fatal accidents in Connecticut between 2018 and 2020. If you drive faster, you need more time to stop to prevent an accident. However, going faster also means there is more force when an accident occurs. In most cases, this results in more serious or even fatal injuries.
Surprisingly, distracted driving only contributed to 3.6% (28 total) of deadly accidents in Connecticut between 2018 and 2020. Some attribute this to the state’s law prohibiting drivers from using handheld devices while behind the wheel. Connecticut’s low distracted driving fatality rate has it named as the 47th worth state for this dangerous behavior. That means it is safer than 92% of states regarding distracted driving.
Time of Year Trends
While deadly car accidents can happen any time of year, it was discovered that the most occurred in August from 2018 to 2020. After August was July and June, it is worth noting that all three of these months are part of the “100 deadliest days of summer,” which lasts from Memorial Day to Labor Day. It was also found that more teens were involved in fatal accidents during these months than any other demographic. High-risk Zones: Identifying Dangerous Roads and Intersections
Identifying and being cautious in high-risk zones can significantly reduce the risk of accidents. Recent official reports highlight several risk areas in Connecticut that have been notorious for frequent accidents. These areas often include busy intersections, highways with high-speed limits, and roads with poor lighting or signage.
While this is true, there are some specific roads and intersections to be particularly careful of, including:
- Stratford | Bridgeport: I-95 from Exit 33 to Exit 26
- Trumbull | Bridgeport: SR-8 from Exit 10 to Exit 3
- New Haven: SR-10 from Kimberly Ave. to Boston Post Rd.
Remember, these are just a few examples of dangerous, high-risk areas in the state. There are many others, so you must remain vigilant whenever you get behind the wheel.
Understanding Your Rights After a Fatal Connecticut Car Accident
After a fatal car accident, knowing what to do or how to navigate the emotional and legal process can be seemingly impossible. Knowing your legal rights and options can help you at this time. Speaking to an experienced Connecticut car accident lawyer who can provide further advice and guidance is also beneficial.
Connecticut Wrongful Death Claims
In Connecticut, the deceased’s estate can file a wrongful death claim. This claim, typically facilitated by a Connecticut car accident lawyer, seeks to obtain compensation for various damages, including, but not limited to, funeral expenses, medical bills incurred before death, and the loss of the deceased person’s expected income. The claim must be filed within two years of the death, as mandated by Connecticut’s statute of limitations.
Apart from the wrongful death claim, families may pursue compensation for their pain and suffering, a legal avenue acknowledging the emotional turmoil endured by the deceased’s loved ones.
To do this, it is necessary to document all related information and gather evidence to support your claim. At Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers, we can help with this process and allow you to focus on grieving and healing from the unfathomable loss you have experienced.
Laws to Protect Victims
Connecticut law is written to help protect the rights of victims. The state imposes serious penalties on reckless drivers, including hefty fines and imprisonment.
Connecticut’s dram shop law also holds establishments responsible if they serve alcohol to visibly intoxicated individuals who later cause fatal accidents. Understanding these provisions can equip you with the necessary knowledge to safeguard your interests and seek justice fervently.
How to Help Prevent Future Fatal Accidents on Connecticut Roads
Injuries and fatalities on Connecticut roadways cause significant economic losses. However, these losses’ impact on individuals, families, and communities is more relevant.
Understanding the risk factors of fatal accidents is the first step in preventing them. For example:
- Increasing the average speed is directly related to the likelihood of an accident occurring and the severity of the accident.
- The death risk for pedestrians struck by the front of a vehicle increases quickly – 4.5 times higher from 31 mph to 40 mph.
- Car-to-car side impacts increase the fatality risk by 85% at 45 mph.
- Driving under the influence of psychoactive substances, alcohol, or other drugs increases the risk of an accident, even when BAC levels are not at or above the legal limit.
Now that you know some of the risk factors, learning more strategies to help prevent car accident-related deaths on Connecticut roadways is beneficial.
The first step is to be well-informed about the road laws and actively follow them. It goes beyond just knowing the rules – it means understanding the spirit behind them to ensure safety for all. Consider enrolling in defensive driving courses to hone your skills and become a more conscientious driver on Connecticut roads.
Community efforts can go a long way in preventing accidents. Encourage your family, friends, and peers to adhere to speed limits and avoid distracted driving. If you witness reckless driving, report it to the authorities. Establishing neighborhood watch groups focusing on road safety can foster a community of responsible drivers and potentially save lives.
Support Legislative Actions
Supporting legislative actions that enhance road safety can be a significant step. Stay informed about local policies and participate in community discussions to voice your concerns and suggestions. Advocate for stricter laws against drunk driving and other dangerous behaviors on the road. With a proactive stance, we can work towards safer roads in Connecticut.
Protecting Yourself and Others on Connecticut Roadways
It is a sobering reality that fatal Connecticut vehicle accidents are a persistent issue on our roads. The loss and grief that follows such tragic events are profound, touching countless lives each year. However, it is in our hands to build a safer future.
As dedicated Connecticut car accident lawyers, we firmly believe that we can significantly reduce these tragic incidents through community effort and awareness. Remember, each step taken towards safer driving protects you and safeguards the entire community.
If you have lost a family member due to another person’s negligence or wrongful act, we are here to help. Contact our Connecticut injury lawyers at Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation. We can learn about the facts of your case and help you understand what compensation you may be entitled to.