Ohio Fatal Car Accident Facts & Figures [2023]


Car accidents in Ohio present a grim reality for many families. Every year, hundreds of people die in car crashes throughout the state, leaving irreplaceable voids in the lives of their loved ones. These collisions are caused by a variety of factors, including drunk driving, recklessness, and lack of proper seat belt usage.

Recent data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) have shed light on the prevalence of these tragic events, painting a picture of loss and underscoring the need for safety measures. Here is what you need to know about Ohio’s fatal car accidents in 2021 and 2022.

How Did the Number of Fatal Crashes in Ohio Change from 2021 to 2022?

According to the NHTSA, Ohio witnessed 1,354 fatalities in 2021, a distressingly high figure. In 2022, this number decreased to 1,278 fatalities. This change represents a 5.6% reduction in fatal crashes, indicating a move in the right direction towards improved road safety. While this decrease is encouraging, the loss of life remains a significant and pressing concern.

Comparing Ohio’s Fatal Crash Rate to the Rest of the U.S., 2021-2022

Ohio’s fatal crash rates reflect broader trends in the United States. Nationwide, 42,939 people died in car accidents in 2021. The following year, 2022, saw a decrease to 42,795 fatalities, marking a 0.3% difference. Although both Ohio and the United States saw a decrease in road fatalities, Ohio has seen a much more significant reduction.

Ohio Motor Vehicle Fatal Crash Stats By Road User Type, 2021

According to the IIHS, different road users are more susceptible to fatal accidents than others. Of the 1,354 traffic fatalities in 2021, Ohio saw these distributions:

  • 515 car occupants died in fatal crashes, making up 38% of total deaths
  • 321 pickup and SUV occupants died, making up 24% of total fatalities
  • 226 motorcyclists were killed, making up 17% of total fatalities
  • 168 pedestrians died in road accidents, making up 12% of the total
  • 26 large truck occupants were killed, making up 2% of the total
  • 30 bicyclists died in fatal crashes, making up 2% of the total

Fatal Ohio Crash Injuries by Road User Type, 2021

Are Single- or Multi-Vehicle Fatal Crashes More Common in Ohio?

Fatal crash data in Ohio reveals a near-even split between single- and multi-vehicle incidents. In 2021, single-vehicle crashes accounted for 668 fatalities (49%), while multi-vehicle crashes resulted in 686 deaths (51%). This distribution differs from national trends, where the majority of motor vehicle crash deaths in 2021—52%—occurred in single-vehicle crashes. However, national data is also a near-even split.

How Big of a Role Does Alcohol Play in Fatal Ohio Crashes?

Alcohol impairment can cause drivers to lose their judgment and reaction capabilities, leading to very severe, often fatal crashes. Blood alcohol content (BAC) remains a significant factor in fatal car crashes, with drunk drivers posing a heightened risk on the roads. In 2021, of the 662 drivers who died in Ohio car accidents, 561 (85%) had their BAC recorded. Among these, drivers with BACs of 0.08 or higher constituted 224 fatalities—34% of the total.

The Effect of Seatbelt Use on Reducing Fatal Collisions

Seatbelt usage can save lives, and fatal crash data reflects this trend. By keeping occupants securely fastened, seatbelts greatly reduce the risk of being ejected during a crash and minimize the severity of injuries when they are used correctly. Nationally, the rate of seatbelt use among front-seat passenger vehicle occupants was 90% in 2021. In Ohio, however, the usage rate was slightly lower at 84%.

Of the 862 vehicle occupants who were fatally injured in Ohio in 2021, 309 were restrained, which is only 36% of the total. Notably, 443 occupants were not restrained—making up 51% of all vehicle occupant deaths in Ohio. The restraint status of the remaining 110 occupants is unknown.

Seatbelt Use During Fatal Ohio Crashes, 2021

After a Car Accident, an Attorney Can Help

A car accident can alter your life, especially if you lose a loved one in the crash. In the wake of such a devastating event, you may find yourself engulfed in a whirlwind of emotions—grief, anger, confusion—coupled with the daunting task of dealing with legal processes such as insurance claims or lawsuits.

If you or a loved one is injured in a motor vehicle collision, a Cincinnati car accident lawyer can play a crucial role in guiding you through the often-confusing process of filing an insurance claim or lawsuit. They can provide legal guidance and advice, as well as emotional support to help you deal with the aftermath of the collision. From consultation to settlement, your lawyer will be your advocate and your ally.

Below are just some of the ways that an attorney can support your case:

  • Evaluating the Merits of Your Case: An attorney can assess the details of the accident, advise you on the strength of your claim, and guide you on the best course of action. This evaluation is crucial in understanding the viability of your case and strategizing for the most effective legal approach.
  • Investigating the Accident: To establish a solid foundation for your claim, you need robust evidence. Your lawyer will gather all pieces of information about your case, including police reports, witness statements, and medical records, to build a solid argument on your behalf.
  • Dealing with Insurance Companies: Your attorney will handle all communications and negotiations with insurance companies, ensuring that you are not pressured into accepting an unfair settlement. They will make sure that your rights are respected and you’re your best interests are protected.
  • Calculating Damages: When filing a claim, you want to ensure that you seek a fair amount that covers both your current and future financial needs arising from the accident. Your attorney will help determine the full extent of your losses, including medical expenses, lost wages, and compensation for pain and suffering.
  • Representing You in Court: If negotiations do not result in a fair settlement, your lawyer will be prepared to take your case to trial. They will use their litigation experience to present your case effectively, ensuring that your side of the story is heard.

For anyone affected by a car accident in Ohio, consulting with an attorney is a critical step toward securing justice and financial support. After the accident, contact a car accident lawyer to learn more about your options and identify your optimal path to recovery.

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