Archive for October, 2022

Now There Are More Fatal Crashes on Urban Than Rural Roads

Car T-boned in a Portland car accident

Portland installs ‘slow zones’ as speed contributes to the deadly national trend

Traditionally, more traffic deaths have happened on rural roads than on urban ones. However, this is no longer the case. In 2019, there were more traffic accident fatalities on U.S. city streets than on rural roads.

Between 2010 and 2019, fatal crashes increased in metro areas by 34 percent while they decreased in rural communities by 10 percent, according to a new AAA traffic report.

Researchers analyzed the relationship between crash factors and urban traffic deaths. Speed was a leading contributor to the spike in fatal city car accidents. Cities have a disproportionate number of speed-related fatalities compared to other communities.

The study says that deadly urban crashes are up due to more people moving from rural areas to cities. AAA concludes that community leaders should make necessary city street improvements to safely accommodate increased traffic from all types of road users.

At Zbinden & Curtis, we see the devastating effects of bad car accidents in Portland and other communities throughout Oregon every day. Our dedicated legal team fights to get injured crash victims the justice and compensation they deserve. Contact us for a free case evaluation if you were injured or a loved one died in a Portland area car accident.

Fatal urban traffic accident study

The following are highlights from the AAA study, “Traffic Fatalities on Urban Roads and Streets in Relation to Speed Limits and Speeding, United States, 2010-2019.”

  • Between local city streets, principal arteries, minor arteries, and collectors – fatal car accidents were least likely to occur on local streets. Instead, they most frequently happened on major arteries – like Powell Boulevard, Yeon Avenue (US 30), and 82nd Avenue (Route 213).
  • In fatal urban speed-related car accidents, speeders and their passengers are the most likely to succumb to injuries. They account for about 63 percent of speeding fatalities.
  • Men were far more likely to be in a fatal city speeding accident than women. Over the four years studied, about 27,600 men and 8,500 women were killed nationwide in speeding accidents.
  • The greatest number of fatal urban crashes (around 49,900) happened on roadways with posted speed limits of 40-45 mph. Another 41,000 fatal crashes were recorded on streets with speed limits of 30-35 mph.
  • Occupants in cars, motorcycles, and other passenger vehicles, as well as pedestrians, experienced the most urban traffic fatalities.
  • Speeding urban drivers were just as likely to cause a deadly crash in daylight or darkness. Whereas fatal traffic accidents where speed was not a factor were more likely to occur during daylight.
  • Roadways that use traffic signals experienced the most speed-related urban traffic fatalities compared to those that use regulatory signs and other signals or have no control.
  • One of the most common types of speed-related urban fatal traffic accidents was an angle collision, which is sometimes called a T-bone or broadside. Meanwhile, non-speeders were in more fatal collisions involving pedestrians and bicyclists than speeders.

Portland roadway safety upgrades

The City of Portland has made many roadway safety improvements and has plans for more. Recent measures taken to reduce crashes include:

  • Safety upgrades to reduce car accidents and gun violence at Arleta Triangle in Southeast Portland by altering an intersection to include community gathering space.
  • The city participated in the regional “Slow the Flock Down” campaign that used bright signs and the state’s bird to promote traveling at safe speeds.
  • “Slow zones” have been declared all over Portland. About 84 percent of city streets have speed limits of 25 mph or less.
  • Portland officials have made a concerted effort to alter speed limits to improve safety since 2017. This year, speed limits on the following streets were decreased to 20-30 mph:
    • Foster, from 89th to 91st
    • Glisan, from 22nd to Sandy
    • Halsey, from Grand to 30th
    • Hawthorne (eastbound viaduct), from Hawthorne bridge to Grand
    • Madison (westbound viaduct), from Water to Grand
    • Woodstock, from 91st to 93rd street

Portland car accident lawyers committed to helping victims

After a serious motor vehicle accident, put yourself in the best possible position to obtain the compensation you need and deserve. Contact the experienced legal team at Zbinden & Curtis for a free case evaluation. Do not delay. A statute of limitations applies to car accident injury claims and wrongful death lawsuits. To discover how an experienced Portland car accident lawyer can help you, contact us for a free case evaluation right now.