As the economy recovers, accident rates could rise again. Over the past two years, accident rates in many areas of the country have dropped due to fewer vehicles on the road. However, as people find work the number of traffic fatalities may increase with the higher number of cars on the road.
Over the past six years, traffic fatalities dropped 26 percent, from 43,510 to 32,310. Analysts are predicting that as the economy strengthens and more people are on the road for work and vacations and others return to their old habits of driving without worrying about the cost, there will be a rise in the number of traffic accidents and deaths.
One of the first things that people do when the economy begins to recover is to drive and travel more. When times get hard, people stop driving gas-guzzlers, like sports utility vehicles and pickup trucks, even though they are larger and safer vehicles, and move toward purchasing smaller fuel- efficient sedans. Smaller cars, although less expensive to run, increase a person’s injury and fatality risks.