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Car accident fatalities on the rise

California drivers may be interested in learning that the number of roadside fatalities in the U.S. in 2016 was the highest since 2007. According to estimates released by the National Safety Council, there were more than 40,000 deaths in 2016 due to motor vehicle accidents. They stated that a healthier economy and lower gas prices have led to more drivers, which is responsible for the increase in automobile crash fatalities.

The National Safety Council also released survey findings that reveal other possible causes for the rise in deaths due to car accidents. The results showed that about 47 percent of drivers acknowledged they were comfortable texting and driving. Additionally, 10 percent of motorists also stated they drove while under the influence of alcohol, and about 43 percent of them reported getting into accidents while driving impaired. It was also estimated that car accidents cost more than $430 billion in 2016.

As a response to the findings, the National Safety Council stated support for a total ban on cellphone use while driving, including hands-free systems. The group also called for mandatory ignition interlock devices for those convicted of drunk driving. Finally, a three-tiered driver's license system for new drivers who were under the age of 21 was also recommended.

If a person gets hurt in a car accident caused by a drunk or distracted driver, he or she could potentially seek compensation for his or her injuries and other damages that resulted from the crash. A personal injury attorney may assist with filing the lawsuit and gathering evidence that shows who was at fault for the accident. Attorneys will usually negotiate with the insurance companies involved to recover the appropriate amount of compensation. However, if the other party refuses to settle, the case could end up in court.

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