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California Car Accident Statistics 2024 – Traffic Fatalities CA

California Car Accident Statistics 2024 – Traffic Fatalities CA
Marc Karlin

One of the most difficult byproducts of being a California car accident lawyer is realizing just how many Californians lose their life in a car accident each year. Even more disheartening, many of these accidents and deaths could have been prevented for one reason or another.

What Are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents in California?

Most fatal car wrecks in California include some form of distracted driving. Distracted driving comprises a number of different activities that take the driver’s attention off of operating the vehicle and navigating the road in a safe manner. Distracted driving includes talking on a cell phone, texting on a cell phone, talking to other passengers, applying makeup while driving, preparing and eating food while driving, or looking for items in the floorboard or back seat while driving.

The next most common cause of car accidents in Fontana is failing to follow the rules of the road. The laws most commonly violated by drivers include tailgating, speeding, failing to yield, running red lights, running stop signs, not paying attention to road signs, following too closely to safely slow down, and driving while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

The following comprises more statistics about California drivers and accidents throughout the state and the rest of the globe. 

  • Each year, over 3,700 people die on California roadways.
  • There is an estimated amount of between 20 and 50 million accident-related injuries that occur globally each year.
  • At least 250,000 accidents in which injuries occur are reported in California each year.
  • Over 50,000 of these car accidents are speeding-related.
  • 24% of people who die in car accidents are pedestrians (around 1,000 annually).
  • California has the 11th highest ranking for pedestrian deaths caused by motor vehicle accidents.
  • Around 500 motorcycle crashes each year are fatal.
  • It is estimated that unreported accidents, as well as minor accidents and accidents that do not involve injuries, are more than half a million annually.
  • The age group with the highest number of fatalities is ages 21 through 25.
  • 72% of crash-related fatalities involve men more often than women.
  • 50% of drivers in California who are killed in a car wreck are under the influence of drugs.
  • 30% of fatal crashes in California involve drivers driving under the influence.
  • California is the second state in the country for the most fatal car accidents.
  • In 2024, there were roughly 4,000 fatal car accidents.
  • California is second only to Texas, which had a mere 75 more accidents than California in 2024.
  • Florida followed California with about 500 fewer accidents in 2024.
  • California has the highest traffic fatality rate in the country.
  • A person dies in a car collision every two and a half hours in the state of California, on average.
  • In 2024, 64% of those who died in a car accident in California were not wearing their seatbelt.
  • In 2019, there were 130,000 hit-and-run crashes, 25,000 of which resulted in injuries.
  • Talking on a cell phone while driving increases the chance of the driver getting into a car accident by up to 400%.
  • The leading cause of death of children under the age of 15 in the US is car accidents.
  • Every 88 minutes, one pedestrian dies in a car crash in the US, on average.
  • In the US, there are about 285 million vehicles and about 240 million licensed drivers on US roadways.
  • Of the 6 million car accidents that occur in the US each year, 38,000 fatalities occur as a result of those accidents.
  • Motor vehicle accidents in the US result in costs totaling as much as $250 billion each year.
  • Motor vehicle accidents in California result in nearly $6 billion in damages each year.


Q: What Is the Law in California for Car Accidents?

A: California is an at-fault state when it comes to car accidents. California law dictates that an at-fault driver involved in a car accident is responsible for the injuries and damages experienced by any other party involved in the accident. However, California operates under comparative negligence, which allows for shared responsibility among multiple people involved.

Q: Is CA a No-Fault Car Accident State?

A: California is a comparative fault state. This means that net settlement award amounts are commensurate with the percentage of fault shared by the injured party. For example, even if a driver was found to be 98% at fault for an accident, they would still be entitled to recover 2% of the gross settlement award.

Q: What Happens If You Don’t Report an Accident in California?

A: When someone is involved in a collision in California, even if the collision occurred on private property, you must report the accident to a law enforcement. If you fail to report an accident or leave the scene of the accident without waiting for law enforcement to arrive, or fail to call law enforcement within 24 hours of the accident, your driving privileges will be revoked, and you could be charged with a misdemeanor hit and run. A conviction would incur fines and jail time on top of the suspension of your license. It is recommended to talk to an experienced car accident attorney to get expert guidance for your case.

Q: What Is the Leading Cause of Accidents in California?

A: The leading cause of car accidents in California is distracted driving. Drivers can be potentially distracted by many factors, such as cell phone use, like texting and calling, other passengers in the car, putting on makeup, searching for things dropped on the floor, and any other incident that takes focus off of the road and compromises control of the car.

Talk to Our California Car Accident Attorneys Today

If you’ve been involved in a car accident and have sustained a personal injury or damage to your property, whether you are at fault or not, speak with a qualified Corona car accident attorney as soon as possible. You may be owed compensation from an at-fault party. Don’t wait too long to start that process, however, as waiting can result in the statute of limitations for filing a claim for car accident compensation running out. Contact Karlin & Karlin Injury Attorneys to discuss the next steps moving forward with your case.

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