Summer is here, and traffic is up all over the country — including here in Louisiana. A lot of folks are enjoying a renewed sense of freedom as they get out and about, but that freedom needs to be tempered with a bit of caution.
According to the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) back at the end of May, 330 people have already lost their lives so far this year in fatal wrecks on the state’s roads — and they expect the situation to worsen as summer winds on.
What do the statistics say about roadway fatalities?
Fatalities tied to traffic accidents in this state have generally been on the rise over the last few years. Even with the widely reduced traffic over 2020, the number of fatal wrecks continued to inch upward.
Here are some of the most telling statistics:
- There were 762 crashes with fatalities in 2020, up from 681 in 2019.
- Those crashes caused a total of 828 deaths, up from 727 the year before.
- Of those who died, 562 were actually driving one of the vehicles involved. The rest were passengers, pedestrians or bystanders.
- On average, there’s been a 9.6% increase in fatal wrecks over the last five years.
In short, the authorities have good reason to be concerned. That’s why DOTD officials have issued a plea that aims to remind drivers that they need to buckle up, slow down and keep their focus on the road.
Avoiding distractions behind the wheel, they say, can be particularly important in the summer when road construction can pop up very suddenly and make a normally familiar route treacherous. Plus, summer tends to bring a lot of tourists and travelers through the state, and their lack of familiarity with the area can also lead to accidents.
Have you lost a loved one in a wreck?
The untimely death of a loved one can leave you emotionally and financially devastated. If a negligent, distracted driver caused the fatal wreck that took your loved one’s life, the only way to hold them accountable may be through a wrongful death lawsuit. An experienced advocate can help you learn more.