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U.S. Does Not Compare Favorably to Other Countries at Preventing Auto Accidents

January 06, 2011

Recent studies indicate that the steps the U.S. has taken to reduce the number of car accidents and reduce serious auto accident related fatalities and deaths is a mixed bag. While stronger drunk driving laws and more aggressive enforcement along with graduated licenses for teen drivers has reduced accident rates, the U.S. still lags behind other countries when it comes to making its roadways safer.

Recent data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicates that auto accident fatality levels are at a record low. Unfortunately, our progress pales in comparison to a number of other industrialized countries. At Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, we have been helping families who suffer serious injury or wrongful death in Georgia car accidents get the compensation they deserve for over 39 years.

A recent study clearly indicates that while the U.S. has made progress in making the roadways safer there is significant room for improvement. During the last ten-year period, the U.S. has reduced car crash fatality rates by 19 percent. However, France reduced accident fatality rates by 52 percent during the same period. Japan, Australia and Britain also managed to achieve far greater reduction in accident fatality rates during the last ten years than the U.S.

A couple of major factors that likely account for much of the difference is the more extensive use of sobriety checkpoints and red light cameras in other countries. Sobriety checkpoints are prevalent throughout Europe but are used much more infrequently in the U.S. Other studies have consistently shown that the effectiveness of safety laws at reducing accident rates is a function of the seriousness of the penalty and the degree to which the law is aggressively enforced. Routine use of alcohol checkpoints tends to create a greater risk of drunk drivers being caught and may mean the laws have a greater deterrent effect on drinking and driving. Red light cameras are also used less in this country.

A final factor that may account for the difference in accident fatality rates between the U.S. and other industrialized countries may be teen drinking practices. In Europe, many teenagers drink alcohol in limited quantities in a controlled setting with family while underage. Though there is disagreement, some speculate this removes the "forbidden fruit" aspect of teenage drinking and prepares teenagers to develop more responsible alcohol consumption practices at a younger age. Teenagers in the U.S., by contrast, may be drinking underage for the first time during the same timeframe that they are just learning how to drive. It appears that there is some support for this theory because graduated driver's license programs and other programs that put limits and restrictions on teenage drivers seems to have had a significant impact on teenage drunk driving accident rates.

Our attorneys at Montlick and Associates see the tragic aftermath when car crash victims suffer serious injuries and even wrongful death. We are firm believers in the importance of making roadways safer and preventing Georgia car accidents. It is important that the U.S. continue to make strides in making our roads safer, whether that entails stronger DUI laws or more aggressive enforcement, broader use of red light cameras or other measures. In the meantime, we continue to have an unacceptably high number of car crash fatalities and catastrophic injuries.

At Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, we have been representing car crash victims throughout Georgia and the Southeast for over a quarter of a century. If you or a family member has been seriously injured or killed in a Georgia car crash, the attorneys of Montlick and Associates can help. Our experienced Georgia car crash attorneys are available to assist clients throughout all of Georgia, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Dalton, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. Call us today for your free consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333) or visit us on the web at No matter where you are in Georgia, we are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you.

Category: Auto Accidents

Please Note:
All information provided by our blogs is general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Consult a Montlick attorney for details about your unique situation.