The Michigan State Police recently released a new report that analyzes traffic crash data from the last decade. Our team at the Lee Steinberg Law Firm has compiled some of this data to observe interesting trends in numbers and causes of Michigan motor vehicle accidents.
Michigan Statewide Crash Summary
In 2022, there were 293,351 total crashes, which included cars, trucks, motorcycles, buses, and other vehicles. This represented a slight 3.79% increase from 2021 when there were 282,640 crashes. Even though there were more crashes in 2022, the number of injuries decreased by about 1%, from 71,246 to 70,281.
The most populous counties naturally had the highest number of crashes and injuries. Here is the breakdown:
Crash Statistics for Specific Types of Accidents
Distracted Driving Accident Stats
Distracted driving is a common problem in the state of Michigan. Anything that takes a driver’s mind or eyes off the road or their hands off the wheel is considered a distraction.
Just recently, Michigan enacted a new “hands free” distracted driving law that bars drivers from using social media, watching or recording videos or holding their phones to make a call while driving in addition to texting. Passenger vehicle drivers could be fined $100 for a first offense, $250 for subsequent violations and be required to complete a driver improvement course if they are cited three or more times within a three-year period.
According to data from the report, the following were the most common causes of distracted driver-related accidents:
- Using a cell phone to talk, text, or dial: 1,823 crashes
- Using a hands-free device to talk: 161 crashes
- Using some other electronic device: 1,727 crashes
- Passenger distraction: 849 crashes
- Other activity inside the vehicle causing distraction: 5,683 crashes
In 2022, the total number of accidents caused by distracted driving was 15,441. In 2021, the number was 16,543.
Work-Zone Involved Crash Stats
There was a 28% increase in work-zone accidents from 2021 to 2022. In 2021, there were 5,815 work-zone crashes, and in 2022 there were 7,436. Interestingly, Fridays had the highest number of work-zone crashes, and the month in which work-zone accidents were higher was October, with 1,024 crashes.
There are many reasons why a crash might occur in a work zone, but some of the most common causes include
- Speeding and disobeying reduced work-zone speed limits
- Increased traffic congestion in work zones during rush hour
- Distracted driving in work zones
- Aggressive or reckless driving in work zones
Alcohol and Drug-Related Crash Stats
Alcohol-related accident fatalities decreased by 10%, from 357 in 2021 to 322 in 2022. Additionally, drug-involved fatalities in crashes decreased from 275 in 2021 to 249 in 2022. This is likely because drug and alcohol use increased during the pandemic.
As a whole, there were 9,331 alcohol-involved crashes and 2,452 drug-related crashes in 2022. As for who was most often involved in these accidents, the report showed those ages 25-34 being the highest perpetrators, with 4,391 alcohol-related crashes and 1,195 drug-related crashes over ten years.
School Bus Accident Stats
School bus accidents have increased since 2020 because, during the pandemic, most schools were shut down. Before the pandemic, the stats for school bus accidents were similar to what they are now. In 2018 there were 1,073 school bus crashes, 1,197 in 2019, 461 in 2020, 785 in 2021, and 1,041 in 2022.
As for the cause of these accidents, the report doesn’t say. However, from our experience dealing with school bus accident cases, we have found the following to be some of the most common causes:
- Driver fatigue in the morning
- Speeding in school zones
- Failing to obey school bus stop signs
- Traffic congestion during rush hour when school buses are out on the roads
- Lack of training for bus drivers
- Distracted driving
Fatal Accidents Decreased in 2022, But Have Increased Over the Last 10 Years
The total number of fatalities from crashes in Michigan decreased in 2022, but only slightly. There were 1,123 fatalities last year, compared to 1,131 in 2021.
Unfortunately, despite the introduction of increased safety features in vehicles sold over the last decade, the number of fatalities has increased during that time. In 2012, there were 936 fatalities. This marks a 20% increase over the past 10 years.
Other Notable Changes in Michigan Traffic Accidents
The latest data also suggests a mixed bag regarding the type of crashes that have occurred.
Vehicle accidents involving pedestrians decreased to 1,897 in 2022 from 2,203 in 2018. On the other hand, motorcycle crashes have shot up almost 20% since 2018, from 2,648 to 3,158 crashes. Accidents involving a bus or truck have also increased by almost 7% since 2019. The increase in motorcycle accidents and truck crashes may be attributable to COVID-related behavior.
The Lee Steinberg Law Firm
If you were in an accident and need help recovering compensation for your injuries, the Lee Steinberg Law Firm can assist you. Call our Michigan car accident lawyers at 1-800-LEE-FREE (1-800-533-3733). You’ll pay nothing until we settle your case.