Motor Vehicle Crash Deaths Less Likely In Largest US Cities
July 21, 2012

Motor Vehicle Crash Deaths Less Likely In Largest US Cities

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online

The fatality rate from motor vehicle crashes is lower in the 50 largest American cities than the overall national rate, and more young drivers are killed in car crashes in the southeast than anywhere else in the US, a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study has discovered.

According to HealthDay News reports, the overall fatality rate from motor vehicle crashes is 11.1 deaths per 100,000. However, the CDC reported that the 50 largest metropolitan areas in the country (based on 2009 data) posted a rate of just 8.2 deaths per 100,000 people, and that while those cities were home to 54% of the American population, they accounted for just 40% for the crash-related deaths during that year.

"Crash death rates in the metro areas ranged from 4.4 to 17.8 per 100,000, and 37 (74 percent) of the metro areas had rates lower than the overall national rate," HealthDay added. "In the metro areas, the crash death rate for people aged 15 to 24 was 10.9 per 100,000, which is higher than the overall rate for people of all ages. The overall national rate of crash deaths for people in this age group was 17.3 per 100,000," the study found.

The CDC study also found that approximately 7,500 teenagers and young adults between the ages of 15 and 24 are killed in fatal motor vehicle accidents annually, and that the bulk of those deaths occurred in the southeast United States, both UPI and Fox News reported Friday.

The study, which was reported in the CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, was compiled using data from the National Vital Statistics System (NVSS) and the U.S. Census Bureau.

In 2009, there were a total of 34,485 motor vehicle crash deaths reported among US residents, the agency said. Twenty-two percent of those victims were between the ages of 15 and 24, making it the leading cause of death from that age group.

"Motor vehicle crash rates ranged from a low of 4.4 per 100,000 residents in Cleveland to a high of 17.8 per 100,000 in Memphis," the CDC study discovered, according to UPI. "For teens and young adults ages 15-24 years, the motor vehicle crash death rate was 13 per 100,000 residents for all metropolitan statistical areas combined, with a low of 7.3 per 100,000 for the New York City area and a high of 25.8 per 100,000 for Birmingham, Ala."

"Motor vehicle crashes among teens and young adults are of particular concern because they are the leading cause of death in the 15-to-24 age group," HealthDay added. "The investigators recommended prevention efforts such as: use of strong graduated-driver licensing policies, including nighttime driving limits and passenger restrictions; and enforcement of minimum legal drinking age and zero-tolerance laws for drivers younger than age 21."