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Philadelphia Auto Accident Statistics

Posted on July 15, 2022

Each year, thousands of people are seriously injured or killed in car accidents in the U.S. In Pennsylvania alone, there were nearly 80,000 injuries that resulted from car crashes in 2014.

While the data shows that motor vehicle accidents are declining, still more than 32,000 people died in motor vehicle crashes in 2014.

Each day, at least 3 people are killed – that’s one every 7 hours; 9 people are injured every hour.

Of all reportable traffic accidents in 2014 (199,588), passenger cars were involved 56% of the time, light truck/vans/SUVs were involved 37% of the time, heavy trucks 4%, motorcycles 2%, and all other types (such as commercial/school bus, etc.) 1% of the time.

As the chart above shows,  65% of all fatal accidents involve passenger vehicles. In 2014, there were 121,317 reportable traffic crashes in the state of Pennsylvania alone. Crashes claimed the lives of 1,195 people and injured another 79,758 people. On average, 332 traffic crashes, or 14 every hour, occurred that year.

Most common crash types in Pennsylvania

Distracted & Impaired Driving and Auto Accidents?

Speeding clearly accounted for the majority of vehicle crashes both nationally and in the state, but drinking and driving and distracted driving were clearly contributing factors here.

In the state of Pennsylvania, the problem of drinking and driving remains a top safety issue, mainly because alcohol related crashes are more likely to involved fatalities. Alcohol related crashes caused 333 deaths in 2014. Of occupant deaths, 87% were in the vehicle driven by a drunk driver; 72% of those were the drinking drivers themselves. Pedestrians (13%) were also victims of drunk drivers far too often.

Alcohol related crashes were 4.1% more likely to result in death compared to crashes not involving alcohol.

The majority of those who drank and drove (74%) were male, in the 21-25 age range (42.9%), who drank and drove most often (72% of the time) on weekends.

Driver Error and Vehicle Crashes

Distracted drivers accounted for 13,964 crashes in 2014. When it comes to driver error and distracted driving, a couple of major themes stand out:

  • The use of cellphones while driving
  • The age of the driver

Since the initiation of the Pennsylvania law in 2012 that outlawed texting, Pennsylvania drivers have been cited 3,940 times for texting while driving (1,410 in 2014 alone) and 1,752 times (711 in 2014) for using headphones while driving.

The young drivers (age 16-21) and the mature drivers (ages 65 and over) were most often involved in crashes.
While most of us think we are pretty good at multitasking, this is simply not the case. Trying to attend to more than one thing while driving can be deadly. Research clearly shows that a driver will not be able to react as quickly if he or she is:

    Distracted Driving Statistics

    • In 2013, 3,154 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes involv­ing distracted drivers. This represents a 6.7% decrease in the number of fatalities recorded in 2012. Unfortunately, approximately 424,000 people were injured, which is an increase from the 421,000 people who were injured in 2012.
    • 10% of drivers of all ages under the age of 20 involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted at the time of the crash. This age group has the largest proportion of drivers who were distracted.
    • Drivers in their 20s make up 27% of the distracted drivers in fatal crashes.
    • At any given daylight moment across America, approximately 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or manipulating electronic devices while driving, a number that has held steady since 2010.
    • Engaging in visual-manual subtasks (such as reaching for a phone, dialing, and texting) associated with the use of hand-held phones and other portable devices triples the risk of getting into a crash.
    • Five seconds is the average time your eyes are off the road while texting. If you are traveling at 55 mph, that is enough time to cover the length of a football field blindfolded.
    • Headset cell phone use is not substantially safer than hand-held phone use.
    • A quarter of teens respond to a text message once or more every time they drive. Twenty percent of teens and 10% of parents admit that they have extended, multi-message text conversations while driving. 
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