Los Angeles County has a negative reputation when it comes to driver safety, with one of the highest countywide accident rates in the entire United States. If you live or work in Los Angeles or plan to visit the area in the near future and intend to drive, it is important to know the risks you face every time you head out on the road.
Accidents can happen unexpectedly, but knowing the most common causes of accidents can help minimize your risk of causing one. If you are careful to drive safely and defensively and another driver hits your vehicle, you need to know how to resolve the accident and secure the compensation you need to recover. Belgum, Fry & Van Allen can provide the legal counsel you need in this situation no matter how your accident happened.
Every year, various state and local agencies, as well as private organizations, gather accident data and compile reports. These reports outline the most common causes of accidents, the rate of injury and death resulting from vehicle crashes, and the economic effect these accidents have on local communities.
According to recent data from the California Highway Patrol, the state Department of Motor Vehicles, the United States Department of Transportation, and other entities, a few of the most commonly cited causes of car accidents in Los Angeles include:
These are only a few examples of how accidents happen in Los Angeles each year. When an accident happens, state law dictates that the driver who caused the accident absorbs liability for the resulting damages. The victim has the right to claim compensation from the defendant’s auto insurance and/or file a personal injury suit against them to recover their damages. However, the actual process of pursuing legal recourse for a vehicle accident in Los Angeles can be more challenging than the average person may expect. As accident rates continue to increase in Los Angeles in 2023, it is essential for drivers to understand the value of reliable legal counsel when they need to recover from accidents caused by others.
Los Angeles County consistently reports the highest countywide accident rate in the state each year. In 2022, 312 people were killed in fatal accidents in Los Angeles County. This figure was a 5% increase over the 2021 fatal accident rate and a 29% increase from 2020’s fatal accident rate. So far in 2023, the fatal accident rate for Los Angeles County is on track to meet or exceed 2022’s fatal accident rate.
Accident statistics for the country as a whole indicate that accidents are more likely to occur in urban settings, including freeways, highways, and city centers. Fatal accidents are more likely to happen on highways because drivers are moving faster on highways, and accidents that happen at higher speeds have a much greater chance of causing catastrophic injuries or deaths.
When defining a car accident as a collision resulting in severe bodily injury or death, Los Angeles County reports one of the highest accident rates for any county in the state. In 2022, 10,739 accidents happened in Los Angeles, resulting in injuries or deaths, a slight decrease in the number of accidents reported in 2021, which was 12,804. However, while the total number of accidents decreased, the fatality rate for accidents increased significantly.
Technically, you are not required to hire legal representation after an accident in Los Angeles. You have the right to pursue compensation on your own without an attorney, but you face several risks in doing so. If you do not have an attorney advising you, you could make mistakes with your claim that jeopardize your ability to recover your damages. You could also unintentionally settle for less than you deserve.
Ultimately, Los Angeles County is statistically one of the most dangerous places for drivers in the state. It’s vital for all drivers to use reasonable care at all times, and they should also know what to do when accidents happen. If you need legal representation after another driver has injured you in Los Angeles, contact Belgum, Fry & Van Allen to schedule a consultation with our team.