Recent Spikes in Philadelphia’s Traffic-Related Fatalities

During the pandemic, fewer drivers were on Philadelphia’s roads. Despite the decreased traffic, recent reports show traffic fatalities spiked in Philadelphia in 2020. The overall number of crashes decreased while the number of traffic-related fatalities increased dramatically which may be linked to lighter traffic causing drivers to increase vehicle speeds.

If you or a loved one has been injured or worse in a vehicle accident caused by the negligence of another driver, the Philadelphia car accident attorneys at the Dan Doyle Law Group can help. Our experienced team has an extensive history managing complex claims throughout Pennsylvania.

Traffic Down, but Traffic Deaths Up

Recently, the City of Philadelphia released its annual Vision Zero report, and the findings were a surprise. As the pandemic loomed largely and the city slowed to a crawl, traffic turned more harrowing.

Crash fatalities in 2020 skyrocketed to 88% more than 2019’s numbers in the city. A staggering 156 people were killed in traffic-related crashes. Aggressive and reckless driving involving increased speeds accounted for more than 40% of fatal and severe injury crashes.

All these fatalities occurred as the volume of traffic dropped almost 20%, compared to 2019. Overall traffic accidents decreased last year which makes for even more confounding results.

City spokespeople report that more than 90 traffic-related fatalities had already been reported by the end of summer in 2021. These traffic-related fatalities include any incident involving vehicles, including bicycles and pedestrians struck by vehicles.

“The pandemic…has made people do things they normally wouldn’t do, like driving crazily fast and doing insane stuff with cars in Center City,” said Mayor Jim Kenney at a recent press conference.

Reading Between the Numbers

Cities like New York, Los Angeles, and Pittsburgh also experienced a decrease in traffic accidents, but Philadelphia’s situation was distinct because crash fatalities rose as the traffic thinned out.

Pennsylvania’s Department of Transportation showed a slight overall increase with a 6% bump in traffic deaths from 2019. But Philadelphia’s traffic fatalities are even more alarming because of the locations these accidents occurred.

Some disturbing results seen in these reports include:

  • Traffic accidents disproportionately affect communities of color and low-income neighborhoods.
  • Most of these traffic deaths (80%) happen on only 12% of the city’s roads.
  • Activists working to prevent dangerous traffic situations say the city is too slow in enacting preventative measures.

Vision Zero is a data-driven agency that provides evidence to city officials with an aim of preventing all traffic deaths.

When should I contact a lawyer?

The Philadelphia car accident attorneys at Dan Doyle Law Group are here to answer your questions and explain the law. We have decades of experience and the resources necessary to fully investigate your claim, determine liability, and make sure that you recover the compensation you may be entitled to.

Damages often depend on the nature of the injuries. These may be as simple as lost wages and medical bills, or victims or victims’ families may need to seek maximum compensation. We can guide you through this process. Contact us for a free consultation of your case by clicking here or calling 215-987-3730.