Car Crash Statistics for Washington State (Updated thru 2021)

Each year, thousands of car crashes happen on Washington’s roads. Taking a closer look at the statistics maintained on Washington Department of Transportation (“WSDOT”) can shed some light on common causes and risk groups.

Washington Car Accident Statistics for 2021

We maintain a table of key car crash statistics for Washington state on this blog post. Here are some of the key findings for 2021 crashes in Washington State:

  • 82,152 overall car accidents
  • 575 fatalities
  • 2,502 suspected serious injuries
  • 4,711 drunk-driving related accidents
  • 11,315 teen-driver accidents
  • 15,542 distracted-driving accidents

It is our observation that these numbers may adjust over time, as additional data becomes available. Rest assured, we periodically double check and update our post to reflect these changes.

Car Crash Trends in Washington

When it comes to car crash statistics for Washington, the good news is that overall crashes have declined in the last five years. Surprisingly, the COVID-19 restrictions did not hamper the number of crashes resulting in serious injury or death, In fact, the number of those crashes increased in 2020, as reported by WSDOT. You can read more about these findings on our blog post about increased incidents of extreme speeding during COVID-19.

Crashes involving bicyclists and pedestrians were down slightly, but more needs to be done to protect these vulnerable road users. While not reported on the chart below, there was an uptick of motorcyclist fatalities in 2020.

The restrictions from COVID-19 demonstrate the importance of continuing to abide by posted speed limits and driving sober, even when the roads seem “wide open.”

YearTotal CrashesFatalSerious InjuryDrunk DriverTeen DriverDistracted DrivingPedestrian or Bicycle

Data from WSDOT. Please note that numbers may be subject to adjustments.

Target Zero: Washington’s Bold Plan

Of course, even one death or serious injury is one too many.

Thankfully, the Washington State Traffic Commission agrees. In 2000, an aggressive plan called Target Zero was launched with the goal of having zero serious injuries or deaths by 2030. Target Zero is a multi-faceted, evolving plan that involves projects, programs, initiatives, and campaigns across the state. Some of the focuses include roadway design, establishing best practices in licensing, and public education.

Washington Car Crash Statistics

Avoiding Car Collisions

We all have a part to play to keep our roadways safe. The good news is that most car wrecks are preventable.

The CDC has stated that the following three safe driving measures can save the most lives:

  • Wearing your seatbelt. Over half of all people killed in car crashes do not wear seatbelts.
  • Choosing to not drive under the influence. While deaths from drunk driving have started to decline in recent years, they still account for nearly one-third of all car crash fatalities.
  • Obeying speed limits. Speeding is another risky behavior that results in many collisions and fatalities.

Not surprisingly, drivers who engage in one risky behavior tend to engage in others. For instance, it’s not uncommon to find speeding drivers who are also unbuckled.

Before getting in the car, make sure you are rested, calm, and sober. Learn to create basic driving safety habits, like clearing your car of distractions and wearing your seatbelts.

Can We Help?

Even if you are a safe driver, sometimes you still find end up the victim of someone else’s carelessness. If you live in Washington and have been injured in a car accident, our attorneys are here to help. We offer free consultations, and you only pay us if we’re able to win your case.

Our family-owned firm has decades of experience helping car accident victims in Washington receive the compensation they deserve. Please reach out to us if we can answer questions about your legal rights after a car accident.

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