The Geography of Fatal Car Crashes

Where do the most traffic deaths happen?

1 minute read

March 11, 2024, 11:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction


Two cars crashed head-on into each other on wet asphalt road.

Tricky Shark / Adobe Stock

An analysis of National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data collected over 18 years reveals trends in where fatal car crashes occur. About a quarter of deadly crashes happen in intersections and are concentrated in under 900 “deadly intersections” where three or more fatal crashes have occurred. 

According to an article in Arizona’s Family, “Across all intersections, main arteries — higher-speed road classes including interstates, U.S. and state highways, and county roads — are part of just over 65% of fatal crashes and 57% of deaths, either intersecting with each other or with local roadways.” Main arteries, with their higher speed limits, pose more risk: fatal crashes are more than twice as likely to happen at the intersection of two arteries.

At the state level, Florida “is #1 in fatal crashes at all intersections and at deadly intersections, and it has more than three times as many deadly intersections (257) as the next highest state, Arizona (82).”

Saturday, March 9, 2024 in Arizona's Family

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