Car accidents are a common occurrence in Maine. Distracted driving, inexperience, adverse weather conditions, and more can impact the number of collisions recorded every year.
The Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT) published a report examining Maine auto accident statistics and trends between 2017 and 2021. The report is aimed at helping individuals understand the circumstances leading to car accidents, which could benefit those contemplating legal action after a collision.
Were you involved in a Maine car accident that resulted in injuries? Was that collision caused by another party’s negligence? If so, contact Mann Law today. We can review your case and help you decide whether to pursue legal action.
The Maine Department of Transportation reviewed data, including information from the MDOT traffic incident reports that drivers file following a non-injury collision. From 2017 to 2021, Maine saw a total of 166,842 auto accidents, and these crashes had consequences.
23.31% of them, or 38,889, led to injuries, and 2,927 of those were severe enough to cause grave injuries. On a more tragic note, 719 accidents, accounting for 0.43% of the total, resulted in fatalities.
The yearly breakdown of fatal accidents during these five years shows the following:
These figures are a sobering reminder of how careful everyone should be on the road. Understanding these patterns and statistics makes formulating preventive measures and promoting safety on Maine’s roads easier.
It’s essential to look closely at the data from these collisions to better understand the overall trends. Here are some standout points from the report.
From 2017 to 2021, most drivers were “normal” at the time of the accident. However, certain adverse conditions have contributed significantly to the crash rates. The two most notable conditions involved drugs and alcohol or fatigue.
2.64% of the total car crashes in Maine involved drivers under the influence of drugs or alcohol. DUIs accounted for 6,556 accidents over those five years. These numbers are a stark reminder of the devastating effects of substance-impaired driving and underscore the need for stricter enforcement of DUI laws and public awareness campaigns.
Fatigue and sleepiness while driving can significantly impair a driver’s ability to operate a vehicle safely. Within the given time frame, 4,147 accidents, or 1.67% of the total crashes, involved drivers who fell asleep or were fatigued. This emphasizes the importance of adequate rest before getting behind the wheel, especially for long drives.
Looking at the nature of the crashes provides a clear perspective on the common types of accidents on Maine roads.
32.08% of total accidents, or 53,521, involved rear-end or sideswipe collisions. These accidents often occur due to tailgating, distracted driving, and sudden braking. Defensive driving and maintaining an appropriate following distance can help reduce these types of crashes.
25.37% of the total crashes, translating to 42,324 incidents, involved vehicles going off the road. This typically happens due to loss of vehicle control, often because of high speeds, distractions, or adverse weather conditions.
Accidents involving deer accounted for 16.84% of the total accidents, or 28,096. Given Maine’s diverse wildlife, drivers must remain vigilant, especially when animals are most active at dusk and dawn.
When focusing specifically on fatal accidents, the figures reveal that going off the road led to a staggering 49.10% of fatal crashes. Rear-end or sideswipe collisions accounted for 18.22% of fatal accidents, while intersection crashes comprised 10.43% of all fatal collisions.
Accident patterns vary significantly across different times of the year and week.
Over the five-years studied, December saw the highest number of accidents, followed by November and January. As for the days of the week, Friday was the worst day for accidents, followed by Thursday and Wednesday.
Most accidents occurred during daylight hours, accounting for 63.44% of crashes. Dark (non-lighted) conditions contributed to 21.48% of accidents.
Weather plays a pivotal role in road safety. Perhaps interestingly, clear conditions saw the highest number of accidents. This seems to imply that when the weather is good, we tend to get less cautious.
However, cloudy days, snowy conditions, and rain also contributed significantly to the crash statistics. This underscores the need for drivers to pay attention to the weather and adapt their driving habits to the prevailing weather conditions.
An analysis of the contributing factors points towards failure to yield the right of way as the top cause, followed by following too closely, running off the roadway, and driving too fast for the conditions. These factors hint at the role of defensive driving in preventing accidents.
Regarding age demographics, most accidents involved drivers in the 30-39 age group, followed by those aged 50-59. However, regarding fatal accidents, the 50-59 age group had the most incidents, with 121 crashes.
The 60-69 age group had 119 fatal crashes, and the 30-39 age group had 112 crashes. This data suggests that while younger drivers are more often involved in accidents, older drivers face a higher risk of fatal outcomes.
One possible explanation for the higher crash rates among younger drivers is that they tend to be less experienced and may engage in riskier behaviors on the road, such as speeding or distracted driving. On the other hand, the higher fatality rates among older drivers could be due to several factors, including slower reaction times, medical conditions, and increased vulnerability to injuries.
In the wake of an automobile accident, it’s crucial to consult with a knowledgeable and dedicated attorney who can help you navigate the complexities of the claims process. Mann Law is a reputable, woman-led law firm in Maine, and we are here to assist you. Previous experience defending auto insurance companies sets us apart from other Maine auto accident lawyers.
In other words, we’ve been on the other side, and we know how they think and operate. Our team has a deep understanding of Maine auto accidents, and we leverage this insight to provide the best legal representation possible.
We don’t just aim for monetary settlements but strive to ensure you receive justice and closure. Each case is unique, and we tailor our approach to meet your specific circumstances, considering all details and potential outcomes before discussing possible settlement amounts.
Contact Mann Law today to schedule an initial consultation. Let us review the facts in your case and help you decide whether you want to pursue legal action.