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Economy tied to increase in motor vehicle accidents

Earlier this year, the Detroit Free Press reported that 2016 was the deadliest year for auto drivers in Michigan since 2007. A total of 1,021 people died in more than 300,000 crashes across the state. Experts speculate that there are three core reasons that caused this increase: texting and driving, lower gas prices, and an economy which is improving.

A researcher with U of M believes that the Great Recession caused a decline in the number of younger drivers, who tend to take more risks. Nationally, this is also true. There was a decline in traffic fatalities between 2007 and 2011. The number of fatalities leveled out for a few years, then they began to rise in 2015. Although texting and driving is one possible cause for more fatalities on the road, the bigger cause might be that drivers are spending more time on the roads. It is cheaper to go places, more people have jobs and take to the roads more often. Lower gas prices mean more people taking pleasure trips.

The good news is that even though traffic fatalities are on the increase, the numbers are still much lower than in the past. The highest number was in 1969, when 2,487 people died on the roads. This is almost 2.5 times more than those who died in 2015. Overall, cars coming out in 2017 are significantly safer than those manufactured just a decade ago.

A motor vehicle accident can change your life forever. If you lost a loved one in an accident on Michigan roads, you may want to speak to a lawyer about compensation to make sure you are not left with medical bills and other expenses that will make it more difficult to find your footing after the loss of your spouse or child. A settlement will never fully compensate your loss, but you should not have to pay for someone else's negligence.

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