Recent data reported by KRQE reveals that 2021 was the deadliest year on New Mexico roadways. The overall traffic fatalities increased significantly during the year in comparison to previous years.
Below, we will briefly discuss some of the concerning statistics highlighted by the New Mexico Department of Transportation and how NMDOT hopes to improve these grim numbers.
Where We’ve Seen Increases in Fatalities
There were a staggering 470 traffic fatalities in 2021 on New Mexico roads. This is a significant increase from the 425 traffic fatalities the state experienced in 2019. According to NMDOT spokesperson Jeff Barela, some of the most common contributing factors to fatal accidents in New Mexico over the past year were speeding, aggressive driving, and distracted driving. Traffic fatalities in 2021 were higher than they have been in at least a decade.
The numbers decreased in terms of traffic-related fatalities caused by drunk driving. In 2019, there were 176 alcohol-related crashes in New Mexico. In 2021, there were 110. As of 2021, alcohol-related traffic deaths were at their lowest rate in two decades, with Barela noting a 26 percent decrease in drunk driving crash fatalities last year.
Still, Lindsey Valdez, a representative for Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) New Mexico, says that the number of alcohol-related traffic fatalities in 2021 was still far too high.
How to Improve These Statistics
Barela mentioned that NMDOT would be concentrating its energy on finding new ways to tackle issues like speeding, road rage, and distracted driving.
The onus is on both the government and individual motorists to take steps to improve these grim traffic fatality statistics. The government can enact new policies to reduce traffic accidents, better enforce current laws and regulations, and improve driver education programs. Motorists can do their part by obeying traffic laws, avoiding distractions such as texting and talking on the phone while driving, and avoiding alcohol and drugs before getting behind the wheel.
If you were injured in a car accident caused by a drunk driver in New Mexico, you could be entitled to compensation for losses you suffered, including medical costs, lost income, and pain and suffering. If your loved one was killed in a drunk driving-related accident, you could also be entitled to pursue financial relief for additional damages, such as funeral and burial costs.
If a drunk driver injured you, a New Mexico DUI accident lawyer at Parnall Law Firm could help you hold them accountable for the harm you’ve suffered and losses you’ve incurred. You should never have to pay out of pocket for someone else’s poor decisions. If you’re hurt, call Bert. Contact us today for a free case review with an experienced Albuquerque injury attorney.