There are approximately 3.3 million drivers in Louisiana. While many of these drivers behave responsibly behind the wheel, some behave negligently. This negligence can lead to the untimely deaths of hundreds of people. In fact, in 2013, 703 people died in Louisiana road accidents. This number makes up 2.15 percent of the 32,719 car accident deaths that occurred nationwide that year.

Some accidents are unavoidable due to hazardous road conditions and bad weather. However, a number of accidents have to do with the complacency and carelessness of drivers behind the wheel. For instance, there is a general belief that elderly drivers tend to be dangerous behind the wheel, but this isn’t necessarily the case. The National Safety Traffic Safety Association found that in 2013 the number of fatalities in both the 25-34 age group and 16-24 age group were higher than the fatalities in the 65 and over age group. The director of the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission does find that elderly drivers may take risks regarding their health, which can contribute to fatalities on the road. Younger drivers are a risk due to their inexperience and immaturity.

Louisiana drivers of all ages may be required to complete an evaluation after a traffic stop to ensure that they are safe to drive. Vision tests are also required to renew the license of senior citizens. Improved safety features are also aiding in the fight to save lives on the roadways. A majority of Louisiana drivers complied with seat belt laws in 2014. However, almost half of accident deaths were motorists who were not wearing seatbelts.

Accident deaths and injuries are being caused by irresponsible motorists. Filing lawsuits against these drivers may help victims and their families put their lives back together after an accident.

Source: The Shreveport Times, “Safer roads require attentive drivers,” Zach Beaird, Oct. 15, 2015