Car Accident Facts in Canadaby Steve Johnson
Car accidents result in bodily injury, damage to property and sometimes death. For industrial nations like Canada, where the number of passenger vehicles alone has increased by 60 percent in the last 20 years, it has become a major concern. Various factors contribute to the risk of car accidents, including car design, speed, road design and driver impairment.
According to the Canadian Transportation Safety Board, about 160,000 road accidents occur in Canada each year. This translates to 2,800 to 2,900 people killed on the road every year. The number of registered passenger vehicles in Canada has reached 7.92 million and is rising everyday. Canadians spend an average of two full days per year traveling to and from work. They also commute an average of 63 minutes per day.
Alcohol & Drug Influence
Driving under the influence of alcohol has become one of the major causes of car accidents all over the world. An organization called MADD Canada has also been active in fighting drugged driving which is a largely unrecognized cause of car accidents in Canada, as well as across the globe.
Cell Phone Use
Research on Canadian car accidents from 2002 to 2007 reveals that an estimated 2.8 percent of Canadian drivers in rural communities were using cell phones in 2006 while 5.9 percent of urban drivers were using cell phones while driving.
Studies also have shown that car accidents cost Canada a total of $62.7 billion every year. This includes direct costs relating to property damage, hospital care, traffic delay, emergency response and out-of-pocket expenses by the victims.
Seatbelts & Airbags
The results of a study done by Stewart, Arora and Dalmotas estimated that 11,690 front occupants of a light-duty vehicle were saved by the use of seatbelts over an 11-year period. There were also 313 Canadians saved by airbags during the same span of time. These figures mean that economic benefits due to use of seatbelts from 1990 to 2000 amounted to $17.5 billion.
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