US: car crashes are a huge economic charge image

According to a 300-page report coming from the NHTSA, the US economic costs related to car crashes have escalated in the 2000-2010 decade by no less than 20%, to $277 billion.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said that braking down the costs, that equals to a quota of $897 per person – coming from the 33,000 crash deaths and 3.9 million injuries in 2010.

“No amount of money can replace the life of a loved one, or stem the suffering associated with motor vehicle crashes,” said US Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “While the economic and societal costs of crashes are staggering, today’s report clearly demonstrates that investments in safety are worth every penny used to reduce the frequency and severity of these tragic events.”

The government’s survey of costs shows that the NHTSA contends that overall costs, including the societal harm are actually of $870.8 billion, stemming from at least $594 billion of losses due to the loss of life, pain and overall decrease of life standards due to injuries.

The studied crashes in 2010 were found to have accounted for 1.9% of the total US Gross Domestic Product, with almost 24 million damaged vehicles. Of these crashes, 18% involved drivers under the influence of alcohol – to an economic loss of $49 billion; crashes occurring because of speeding tallied losses of $59 billion and distracted driving accounted for another 17% of the crashes, for economic losses of $46 billion in 2010.