Charlotte Department of Transportation Crash Report Indicates Room for Improvement on City Streets

A recent crash report released by the Charlotte Department of Transportation (CDOT) finds that more car crashes happened in 2013 than any year since 2009. The report focused on some of the busiest and most dangerous intersections where accidents occur in the city and shined a light on how state officials plan to curb accidents in these areas.

As our experienced Charlotte personal injury attorneys understand, car accidents on roads such as Independence Boulevard, the intersection of East 7th Street and Hawthorne Lane or Interstate 77 may seem unavoidable. But many of these accidents can be prevented if drivers make responsible decisions. Too often, motorists choose to text behind the wheel or drive while drunk. Accident victims injured through no fault of their own should contact an attorney immediately after their accident to discuss their legal rights.

A closer look at Charlotte’s most dangerous roads

According to Time Warner Cable News, there were an estimated 21,000 car accidents on Charlotte city streets in 2013 – the most in the city since 2009.

Breaking the numbers down, that means 57 accidents happened every day within city limits, roughly an average of just over two every hour. Charlotte city officials told Time Warner Cable News that an improving economy has led to more cars on the road, thus leading to traffic congestion and increased accident risks for commuters and residents alike.

Among the study’s findings:

  • More crashes occurred at the intersection of Albemarle Road and East W. T. Harris Boulevard than any other place in the city.
  • More crashes occurred on Friday than any other day of the week.
  • More crashes occurred from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. than any other hour of the day.
  • November, December and May were the months drivers were most likely to be involved in accidents.
  • Pedestrian accident fatalities decreased from 21 in 2012 to 9 in 2013.

Time Warner Cable News reports that the Charlotte Department of Transportation studies car accidents at intersections to figure out if signal timing, sign visibility or lane markers can be altered to decrease accident risk for drivers.

Disturbingly, Time Warner Cable News reports that nearly a quarter of last year’s traffic accidents – or roughly 5,250 – were caused by distracted drivers on Charlotte roadways. This includes common driver actions such as talking with passengers, reaching for food or a drink, talking on a cell phone or texting while driving.

Preventing Car Accidents in Charlotte

The Charlotte Department of Transportation study reveals distracted driving, speeding, reckless driving (failure to yield, disregarding traffic signals and improper lane changes) and alcohol use to be among the top causes of accidents in Charlotte, leading to 50 fatalities and 7,436 injuries to drivers, passengers, pedestrians and cyclists in 2013.

While it may seem like common sense to avoid these dangerous behaviors while sharing the road with others, some drivers make careless or reckless decisions every day. When these drivers choose to drink and drive, run stop signals or pay more attention to their cell phone than the car stopped ahead of their own, they immediately increase the risk of causing injuries or themselves and others.