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Pennsylvania Car Accident Statistics [2024]

Philadelphia Car Accident Statistics

Pennsylvania car accident statistics are vital as they provide essential data that help identify trends, causes, and high-risk factors associated with road incidents. By analyzing these statistics, policymakers and safety organizations can develop targeted safety measures as well as raise public awareness about prevalent dangers, such as distracted driving and speeding.

General Statistics

In 2022, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation recorded a total of 115,938 car crashes. Of those, 49,068 were injury accidents, and 1,092 involved fatalities. The number of people either injured or killed was as follows:

  • 1,179 people were killed in traffic accidents. Of those fatalities:
    • 184 were pedestrians
    • 217 were motorcyclists
    • 15 were bicyclists
    • 164 were related to accidents involving heavy trucks
    • 320 were caused by alcohol-related crashes
    • 268 were speed-related
  • 67,029 people were injured, and included the following:
    • 3,160 pedestrians
    • 3,148 motorcyclists
    • 801 bicyclists
  • 4,751 of the total injuries were reportedly serious, 34,894 were suspected to be minor, 11,629 possible injuries were recorded, and the severity was unknown for 15,754.

This data reflects a slight decrease from the previous year, 2021, which saw 117,899 crashes, 50,705 being injury-related and 1,153 being fatal. Despite this improvement, the numbers remain alarmingly high, underscoring the need for ongoing efforts to enhance road safety.

A lady in emotional distress after a car accident

Common Causes of Car Accidents

The primary causes of car accidents in Pennsylvania include:


This is the leading cause of accidents, contributing to 25,021 incidents, indicating a widespread disregard for speed limits and road conditions.

Distracted Driving

With 11,019 crashes, distracted driving is the second most common cause. Common distractions include cell phones, eating, changing the music, speaking to passengers, and reaching for items.

Improper Turning

Improper turning refers to making illegal U-turns, turning from the wrong lane, failing to signal, or not yielding the right-of-way when making a turn. This resulted in 10,483 incidents, suggesting a need for better awareness and adherence to traffic signals and rules.

Proceeding Without Clearance

Drivers moving through an intersection or roadway without ensuring it is safe to do so accounted for 6,799 crashes. This often involves ignoring traffic signals and stop signs, or failing to yield the right-of-way to other vehicles or pedestrians.

Drunk Driving

Alcohol-impaired driving caused 6,565 crashes. Alcohol consumption reduces the ability to focus, distorts perception, and impairs coordination, making it difficult to operate a vehicle safely and respond to road conditions or hazards.

Improper passing, tailgating, and drowsy driving also contribute significantly to the number of accidents.

Most Common Types of Car Accidents

Car accidents in Pennsylvania vary widely in nature and severity but most commonly include:

Hitting Fixed Objects

These were the most common, involving vehicles colliding with stationary objects such as trees, poles, or barriers, and were responsible for 34,685 accidents in 2022. Due to the sudden deceleration and impact force, vehicle occupants often suffer significant injuries or fatalities

Angle Crashes

33,320 of these accidents occurred, making them another significant concern. Angle crashes happen when the front of one vehicle strikes the side of another somewhere between 90 degrees (T-bone or side-impact) and 180 degrees (rear-end). These types of crashes typically happen at intersections where one vehicle fails to yield the right-of-way or runs a red light, colliding with a crossing vehicle. Angle crashes are particularly dangerous due to the limited protection on the side of vehicles, often resulting in severe injuries or fatalities, especially for the occupants on the struck side.

Rear-End Collisions

Rear-ends are also prevalent, with 22,465 of this type of crash taking place in 2022. These types of accidents are often caused by distracted driving, speeding, or abrupt braking by the lead vehicle.

Sideswipe Accidents

Sideswipe accidents made up 8,400 collisions. These crashes happen when two vehicles traveling in the same or opposite directions make contact along their sides, typically due to drivers changing lanes suddenly or without checking blind spots.

Head On Collisions

Head-on collisions occur when the front ends of two vehicles crash into each other while traveling in opposite directions. 4,586 of these accidents occurred, which can be particularly severe due to the combined impact forces involved.

Pedestrian-Involved Accidents

3,129 vehicles hit pedestrians in 2022. Pedestrian accidents occur when a vehicle strikes a person walking on or near the roadway. These incidents are often caused by drivers failing to yield at crosswalks, speeding, or being distracted.

Non-Collision Events

3,605 non-collision events occurred, where a vehicle is involved in an accident without colliding with another vehicle or object. These typically include rollovers, where the vehicle tips over onto its side or roof, or when a driver loses control and goes off the road without hitting any fixed object.

Backing Up

There were 377 backing up accidents reported, which happen when a vehicle moves in reverse and collides with another car, object, or person.

Temporal and Demographic Trends

Car accidents in Pennsylvania show specific patterns concerning the timing of incidents and the demographics of those involved:

Peak Accident Days

Fridays see the highest number of accidents, with 19,137 incidents, followed by Thursdays with 17,463.

Age and Sex of Drivers

Male drivers were involved in more crashes than female drivers across all ages. The most affected age group for both sexes was 21-25 years, with 23,696 total crashes, comprising 13,808 male drivers (12.5%) and 9,888 female drivers (13.6%).


Data illustrates that non-interstate state highways have the highest number of crashes, fatalities, and injuries:

  • Crashes: 74,644
  • Persons Fatally Injured: 864
  • Persons Injured: 45,252

Local roads also saw high crash rates and injury numbers relative to the mileage and vehicle miles traveled:

  • Crashes: 28,160
  • Persons Fatally Injured: 196
  • Persons Injured: 15,026

The State Highway (Interstate) and Turnpike categories have lower incident rates, but they still account for significant numbers of crashes and injuries:

  • State Highway (Interstate): 10,639 crashes, 95 fatalities, 5,707 people injured.
  • Turnpike: 2,479 crashes, 24 fatalities, 1,038 people injured.

Were You Injured in a Car Accident?

If you or a loved one has been injured in a crash in Pennsylvania, an experienced Philadelphia car accident lawyer can help you recover the compensation you deserve. Arrange a free consultation today by calling (215) 569-0200 or sending a message to Rosenbaum & Associates online.