No matter the state or city, highways always pose a greater danger for drivers than other city roads. Drivers travel at faster speeds, and they don’t always check their blind spots as they move in between lanes. Now though, there’s good news for anyone traveling on Kentucky’s highways. According to a preliminary report from the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety (KOHS), the number of fatal accidents on Kentucky’s highways is down for the third year in a row.
Data from the Report
This latest report is only a preliminary one, but it does indicate that Kentucky’s highways are becoming safer. The KOHS will continue to analyze data and release the full final report in April.
According to the preliminary report, which was released on February 1, 2019, there were only 722 highway fatalities in 2018. While that number sounds large, it’s down from the 782 fatalities seen on highways in the Bluegrass State in 2017. It’s also a huge drop from the 834 highway fatalities seen within the state in 2016.
Kentucky is also on track to make 2019 the fourth year in a row that highway fatalities have decreased in numbers. At the time the report was released, only 44 highway fatalities had occurred in Kentucky. If that number stays on track for the remainder of the year, this year, only approximately 500 fatalities should occur on the state’s highways.
Reasons for the Decline
Upon release of the preliminary report, KOHS officials stated that an increase in seatbelt use and fewer drunk drivers were the reasons for the decline in highway fatalities.
Data from the University of Kentucky Transportation Center backs that claim up, too. According to them, only 86.8 percent of drivers and passengers used seatbelts in 2017. That climbed in 2018, though, with approximately 89.9 percent of drivers and passengers buckling up before hitting the road.
However, both the KOHS and University of Kentucky Transportation Center say there are still many people on the road that are under the influence, not buckled in, or both.
Tips for Staying Safe
The fact that Kentucky has seen a decline in highway fatalities for the third year in a row is certainly encouraging. However, 722 fatalities in one year is still a very large number. For this reason, all drivers are reminded to follow these safety tips to ensure that everyone gets where they are going safely:
Put away the distractions. In Kentucky, it’s not only illegal to text while driving, but it’s also incredibly dangerous as well. Drivers should also note that other activities such as fixing your hair or putting makeup on, using in-vehicle technology, and eating are all also considered acts of distracted driving that can lead to car accidents.
Always drive at or under the speed limit and know the correct lane to use when driving at certain speeds.
Wear a seatbelt. This is the easiest thing to do in order to keep one safe in the vehicle, yet so many in Kentucky still are not buckling up.
Stay alert. Highway conditions change quickly, and drivers need a quick reaction time. Look for reductions in the speed limit, brake lights, signage, and highway workers along the side of the road.
Keep your distance. Rear-end crashes are some of the most common on Kentucky’s highways. Always leave enough room to allow for proper braking and use all mirrors in the vehicle to ensure there is plenty of space around the vehicle.
Drive sober. There are so many other options available other than driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Use public transportation, call a friend or family member, or call a taxi or ride-sharing service.
A Richmond Wrongful Death Lawyer Can Help with Fatal Highway Accidents
Although the number of highway fatalities is dropping in Kentucky, there are still far too many each and every year. These accidents take people away from their loved ones suddenly and unexpectedly, making it much more difficult for those left behind to live their best life. These accidents are typically the fault of one or more drivers, and a wrongful death attorney in Richmond will help family members hold those individuals responsible.
If you have lost a loved one to a fatal car accident, call the Morrin Law Office today at (859) 358-0300. We know how devastating these crashes are and we want to help your family to get some closure knowing that those responsible are held accountable. If you wait to speak with a professional then there may be little to nothing you can do to hold those responsible accountable for their conduct. Call us today so we can protect your rights and interests before it’s too late!