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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the average annual cost of car crash-related deaths in South Carolina was $1.05 billion in 2013, the most recent figures available for individual states. These losses include an estimated $10 million in medical costs and an estimated $1.04 billion in lost productivity because those who are killed are no longer able to work.
The actual total amount of financial loss caused by car accidents is far higher when factoring in the costs of treating car accident injuries and the costs of property damage resulting from car accidents. In fact, the South Carolina Department of Public Safety indicates that traffic accidents caused $4.54 billion dollars in estimated loss in 2016 when factoring in property damage, medical costs and lost wages. This estimate does not include intangible costs such as grief and pain and suffering. Importantly, this figure increased by 5.0 percent in just one year. The previous yearly increase (in 2015 from 2014) was 15 percent.
Although South Carolina law puts the burden on those responsible for causing car accidents to pay for the costs of losses, the amount of money that is spent each year coping with the aftermath of auto accidents still represents a major financial loss.
The South Carolina Department of Public Safety (SCDPS) keeps an up-to-date tally on the number of people who are killed in South Carolina auto accidents. According to its 2016 information:
While fatal crashes are an all-too-common occurrence, not every crash leads to a death. Wrecks that do not cause fatalities can still have life-changing consequences and can cause significant injuries and financial losses. Understanding these types of car accidents is, therefore, also important in having a full picture of auto accident losses in South Carolina.
According to the 2016 SCDPS Traffic Collision Fact Book:
Traffic accidents can happen for a number of reasons. The 2016 numbers in the SCDPS Fact Book are as follows:
Other causes of fatal crashes included exceeding the speed limit in general; falling asleep behind the wheel; making improper turns; medical problems on the part of the driver; oversteering or over-correcting; swerving to avoid objects; and other wrongful acts.