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Rural and urban areas and car accident injury or death risks

On Behalf of | May 17, 2017 | Wrongful Death

Houston area roadways are as varied as its people. In the city proper, the city’s roads are arranged no differently from how any other major city’s downtown, urban area is set up.

It doesn’t take driving more than a few minutes outside the city to reach the suburbs. Driving a bit further, you’ll find a more rural environment. With so many different environments within a single geographic area, there are also different types of accidents that residents find themselves involved in.

According tp the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), in urban areas, bicyclists and pedestrians have a higher risk of being injured of killed as a result of being struck by a car. Accidents resulting in fatalities are more apt to happen at intersections in this type area than anywhere else as well.

In rural areas, both personal car and tractor-trailer drivers run the highest of losing their lives in a car accident. This is thought to be the case because people tend to operate their vehicles at a higher rate of speed than the posted limit within these areas. In fact, even though only 19 percent of all Americans live in rural areas and only 30 percent of all miles driven occur in rural areas, at least 50 percent of all fatal crashes occur in this type of environment.

According to recent statistics released by IIHS, rural area car crash deaths decreased incrementally between 1999 and 2015. While 35,092 overall fatal car crashes were reported in 2015, only 53 percent occurred in rural areas. This is down more than 8 percent from the same data compiled in 1999.

The type of vehicle involved in the crash also has a large impact on death rates in the different areas. At least 70 percent of all fatal pickup truck crashes and 60 percent of all SUV crashes occur in rural areas. Drivers are just as apt to be involved in single-car accidents or rollovers in one area as they are the other at a rate of approximately 55 percent.

No matter whether you live in an urban, suburban or rural area, each environment carries its own risk of injury or death from a car accident. If your loved one was killed as the result of someone else’s negligence, a Houston wrongful death attorney may be able to guide you as you look to recover damages in his or her case.

Source:, “Roadway and environment,” accessed May 17, 2017


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