Birmingham, Alabama, with a population of almost 213,000 residents, is the largest city in the state. According to studies done by the National Traffic Safety Administration, Birmingham is the 14th most dangerous of any American city to drive in. The city averages almost 14 car crashes for every 100,000 people, with one out of every six accident involving a pedestrian. The leading cause of traffic accidents in this busy metropolitan area continues to be the failure of one vehicle to yield the right of way to another. Other leading causes of accidents are tailgating, misjudging the distance needed to stop the vehicle safely, failure to see an object, vehicle or person, and driving too fast for conditions, according to the most recent report released by Alabama Traffic Crash Facts.
According to the University of Alabama’s Center for Advanced Public Safety, Birmingham residents have a one in three chance of being involved in a car accident that causes at least one fatality at some point in the course of their lifetime. There is also a 98% probability in this city that drivers will be involved in at least a minor traffic accident at some point when they are behind the wheel of their vehicle.
According to the most recent statistics, there were 51 vehicles involved in fatal accidents in Birmingham, resulting in 35 fatalities, 9 of those caused by driving under the influence. Five of those fatalities involved individuals who were pedestrians rather than drivers. Alabama State Trooper records indicate that half of the fatal accidents were a result of either drivers or passengers failing to buckle up their seat belts.
Accidents involving teen drivers continues to be a problem for Birmingham, with the state ranked fifth highest in the nation for accidents involving teen fatalities. Twice as many teenagers are killed on the roads here than anywhere else in the nation. August is the most deadly month when it comes to fatal accidents involving teenagers and Saturdays have proven to be the most deadly day for teenagers who are behind the wheel of a car.
In order to make Birmingham as well as the entire state of Alabama a safer place for teenagers as well as adults who drive, the state is involved in a number of safety campaigns, including an annual Click It Or Ticket campaign to encourage the use of seat belts, as well as the Move Over Law requiring drivers to move over and slow down to allow emergency first responder vehicles to pass more quickly on the way to an accident scene.
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