Fatal traffic accidents are a regular occurrence on American interstates. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, an average of 8 people die each day on major American interstates. While these crashes make up less than 10 percent of the total number of fatal traffic accidents, it is still the case that highways offer a number of hazards not seen on other roads. A deeper dive into the data has identified the most deadly major interstate in the country. The top spot belongs to the interstate that circles Atlanta, I-285.
California, Texas and Florida are home to multiple entrants into the competition for most deadly highway, but none were able to top Georgia’s I-285. In 2013, I-285 was the site of 29 traffic fatalities. A total of 26 fatal accidents took place on the nearly 75-mile stretch of highway. That makes it the most deadly interstate in America on a per-mile basis.
Avoiding Deadly Accidents
Safe driving is about more than avoiding dangerous roads. Knowing that I-285 is a relatively dangerous interstate does not mean that taking back roads is a better option. The truth is that more fatal accidents occur on rural roads than city roads. The factors that contribute to fatal car accidents are equally dangerous on side streets as they are on the interstate.
If you goal is to stay safe, there are several things you can do that will be more effective than avoiding a particular road. First, you should always wear your seat belt. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that seat belt use is the single most effective way of reducing fatalities in traffic crashes. Second, you should avoid drunk or buzzed driving. Alcohol is a factor in a substantial percentage of deadly car accidents. Third, you should obey posted speed limits. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports that speeding is a factor in nearly 30 percent of vehicle accident deaths. Finally, you should avoid distractions when behind the wheel. Anything from cell phones to hot coffee can take your attention off the road at a key moment. Staying safe means keeping your eyes on the road and your mind on the task of driving.
Source: AJC.com, “America’s deadliest interstate is in Georgia, study says,” by Ana Santos, 10 November 2015