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New Mexico Named the 5th Most Dangerous State For Drivers

A busy intersection in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

An Albuquerque car accident lawyer explains how negligent drivers put everyone on the road at risk.

Traffic safety experts at Forbes recently named New Mexico the fifth most dangerous state in the country for drivers due to the large number of car accidents here that result in serious injuries and fatalities.

“While accidents can occur anywhere, some U.S. states have more dangerous roads than others,” Forbes noted in its study, which was based on a wide range of car accident statistics for each state.

New Mexico car accidents by the numbers

The Forbes study compared car accident data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for all 50 states based on five different criteria:

  • Total number of car accident deaths per capita
  • Auto accident fatalities per capita
  • Speeding-related car accident deaths in each state
  • Drunk driving-related car accidents fatalities in each state
  • Percent difference in car accident fatalities in 2020 versus 2019 for each state

Using these five metrics, Forbes gave each state a score of 0 to 100. The lower the score, the safer the state for drivers. New Mexico received a score of 38.15, making it the 5th most dangerous state in the country for drivers. Montana was rated as the worst state for drivers nationwide and received the highest score of 45.85.

Speeding is a common cause of New Mexico car accidents

One primary reason New Mexico did so poorly in the recent Forbes study is the large number of car accidents here caused by speeding drivers. An estimated 40 percent of car accident fatalities in New Mexico occur due to speeding. That figure is the sixth worst nationwide for speeding-related accidents by state.

Unfortunately, in New Mexico, speeding-related car accidents have only worsened in recent years. For example, in 2020, more people died in New Mexico due to speeding-related car crashes (160 deaths) than any other year in the state in the last decade, according to NHTSA crash data.

Drunk driving a problem in New Mexico

Along with speeding, car accidents caused by drunk drivers contributed to New Mexico's poor ranking in the study. An estimated 36 percent of all car accident deaths in New Mexico occur each year on average due to drivers under the influence of alcohol, Forbes reported.

And like speeding-related accidents, collisions caused by drunk drivers in New Mexico set a new record high in 2020. That year, 130 people died in car accidents caused by drivers with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher.

Albuquerque car accidents are on the rise.

While car accident deaths statewide have decreased slightly recently, the numbers are only getting worse in Albuquerque. According to NHTSA crash data, a record-high 109 people died in motor vehicle accidents in 2020 in Bernalillo County, which includes Albuquerque. Bernalillo County also set a record for the most speeding-related car accident deaths that year. In 2020, a total of 43 people died in car crashes in Bernalillo County caused by speeding drivers.

Contact Szatho Law Firm if you've been injured in an accident.

Don’t simply assume you will be fairly compensated for your car accident just because another driver clearly caused your crash. In many cases, getting the money you rightfully deserve can be much more complex than you might suspect.

Whether it’s the at-fault driver or their insurance company that’s giving you trouble, Albuquerque car accident lawyer Andras Szantho and his dedicated legal team at the Szantho Law Firm, P.C. can help you every step of the way. We know the law, and we’re prepared to do the work that needs to be done to do the job right.

Learn more about your legal rights. Contact us and schedule a free case evaluation with a New Mexico car accident attorney you can count on when it matters most. Our Albuquerque office is conveniently located on Prospect Avenue. We also have an office located in Santa Fe. Finally, we work on a contingency fee basis. That means you only pay us if we obtain a financial settlement or verdict for you.

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