Wisconsin car, pedestrian and motorcycle accident fatalities up

On behalf of Peterson, Berk & Cross, S.C.

The number of traffic accidents resulting in fatalities in the state of Wisconsin for this year is slightly higher than last year’s numbers, according to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. A total of 68 people died in the month of July, which is eight more than the average for a five year period. Thus far, 333 people have died in traffic accidents as of the beginning of the month, which is an increase of 44 deaths over last year’s figures. The total number of fatalities includes 54 motorcyclists, 23 pedestrians and four bicyclists.

Thus the vast majority of deaths can be attributed to car accidents. Car accidents are one of the leading causes of death in this country. They are also one of the leading causes of personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits. When a person is injured or killed in a car accident caused by the negligent driving of another, such as speeding, reckless or drunk driving, that driver should be held accountable for their actions.

According to a State Patrol Major, more fatal accidents occur in the summer months then in the winter. She suspects that weather may be a contributing factor in that people tend to slow down in the winter months and thus fewer fatalities occur. August is usually the highest month for traffic accidents leading to fatalities, she said. The specific cause of traffic accident fatalities is not broken down by month but rather on a year-to-year basis.

And we may never know if a driver was texting or talking on a cellphone just prior to a crash. The DOT only tracks whether a person had on a seat belt and whether alcohol is involved. And it is also interesting to note that the most frequent car crashes in work zones are rear-end collisions and that 75 percent of deaths from car crashes in work zones are motorists, not road construction workers. That statistic should provide some incentive for drivers to slow down in work zones, one should think.

Source: Beloit Daily News, “Vehicle deaths up slightly this year,” Shaun Zinck, Aug. 3, 2012

We are a personal injury law firm located in Appleton, Wisconsin, and handle a variety of personal injury cases, including boating, motorcycle and auto accidents.