Despite the best efforts of state officials, motor vehicle accidents happen all too frequently in Waipahu and throughout Hawaii. Statistics for fatal crashes paint a grim picture. Honolulu Police Department reveals Oʻahu experienced its 34th motor vehicle fatality in 2023, as reported by Khon2. This statistic highlights the ongoing concern about road safety on the island and emphasizes the need for continued efforts to address and mitigate factors contributing to traffic accidents.
Car accidents will continue if drivers engage in careless or reckless behavior on Hawaii roadways. When a negligent driver seriously injures others, those victims may be entitled to recover compensation for their losses through a personal injury claim or lawsuit.
If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a Waipahu car crash, let the car accident attorneys at Recovery Law Center help you hold the responsible party accountable for their actions. For over 25 years, personal injury lawyer Glenn Honda and his team have fought for the rights and interests of residents and tourists injured in motor vehicle accidents throughout Oahu.
Contact us today for a free consultation with a compassionate Waipahu car accident attorney. We’ll review the details of your case with you and explain how our firm can help you pursue compensation for your injuries and losses.
Leading Causes of Car Accidents in Waipahu
There’s no single cause of car crashes in Waipahu. However, Hawaii is notorious for speed-related accidents. Statistics show that since 2012, an average of 46 percent of fatal car crashes involved speeding.
Impaired driving also plagues the state. According to the most current Hawaii Strategic Highway Safety Plan, Hawaii ranks fourth in the nation for its number of fatal impaired-driving crashes. Other data shows that 59 percent of traffic fatalities tested for intoxication in a recent year were positive for alcohol, drugs, or both.
Other common causes of collisions in Hawaii include:
- Distracted driving
- Reckless driving
- Aggressive driving or road rage
- Running red lights or stop signs
- Ignoring other traffic controls
- Drowsy or fatigued driving
- Driver inexperience
- Unsafe lane changes
- Wrong-way crashes
- Lack of vehicle maintenance
- Defective auto parts
- Poor road conditions
- Dangerous road/intersection design
- Bad weather
- Low lighting
Hawaii Car Crash Fatalities Statistics
The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) released 2023 traffic fatality statistics, reporting 92 deaths from motor vehicle collisions as of December 13. This marks a decrease from 2022’s 112 fatalities by the same time. Driving behavior in Hawaii is showing improvement, evidenced by a Statewide Attitudinal and Behavior Survey, which found decreases in speeding and DUIs among truck drivers and an increase in sober drivers.
However, motorcycle-related fatalities remain high, with 27 deaths in 2023 attributed to DUIs and speeding. Additionally, there have been nine bicyclist fatalities, the highest recorded number in Hawaii, despite increased ridership and safety measures.
HDOT emphasizes bikers’ vulnerability and urges motorists to adopt safe driving practices, including checking mirrors, using signals, and maintaining distance. It advises all drivers to allow for mistakes, share the road, eliminate distractions, and plan travel time to prevent speeding.
HDOT acknowledges public efforts toward highway safety and encourages ongoing responsible driving and respect for all road users.
Driver Attitudes and Behavioral Statistics
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HIDOT) published findings from a behavioral survey assessing residents’ thoughts on the biggest risks for car wrecks in Hawaii. It also asked drivers what kinds of behaviors they engaged in while behind the wheel.
According to the findings:
- 58 percent of respondents thought that “texting while driving” represented Hawaii roads’ second biggest safety issue.
- 31 percent identified talking on the cell phone while driving as a serious safety risk.
- 92 percent of respondents correctly identified that the law prohibits holding a mobile device while operating a motor vehicle, even if stopped at a red light or stop sign.
- 68 percent of respondents reported that the threat of causing fatal accidents and injuring someone had the largest deterrent effect on them engaging in distracted driving.
- 17 percent said that concerns about being ticketed stopped them from cell phone use while driving.
- Less than 10 percent of drivers said that the increase of insurance rates or the embarrassment of being pulled over would deter them from distracted driving.
Why is Distracted Driving the Highest Percentage of Traffic Fatalities?
Distracted driving is a significant contributor to traffic fatalities due to its ability to impair a driver’s attention, reaction time, and decision-making abilities. When drivers divert their attention away from the road to engage in activities such as texting, talking on the phone, eating, or adjusting the radio, they dramatically increase the risk of accidents.
The human brain needs help to multitask effectively, meaning drivers can respond less to potential road hazards when focusing on activities other than driving. Studies show that when we try to do multiple tasks simultaneously, we accomplish less and miss important information. It takes about 15 minutes to refocus on our main task after a distraction. Efficiency can drop by up to 40%, and long-term memory and creativity suffer. Despite having a complex brain with billions of neurons, we need help to multitask effectively. That’s why even momentary distractions can have severe consequences, as it only takes a split second for a collision to occur.
Moreover, the pervasiveness of smartphones and in-car technology has exacerbated the issue, providing more opportunities for drivers to become distracted. Despite awareness campaigns and legislation to curb distracted driving, the temptation to engage in distracting activities remains high for many individuals.
Ultimately, until drivers prioritize the task of driving and refrain from distractions, traffic fatalities will continue to occur at alarming rates. It requires a concerted effort from both individuals and society to address this pressing issue and make roads safer for everyone.
Common Car Accident Injuries
Examples of injuries that vehicle occupants may suffer in car crashes include:
- Deep cuts
- Broken bones
- Dislocated joints
- Sprains and strains
- Soft tissue injuries
- Neck and back injuries
- Spinal cord trauma
- Nerve damage
- Internal injuries and internal bleeding
- Facial injuries
- Head injuries and traumatic brain injury (TBI)
Sadly, many serious injuries prove fatal for accident victims. If you’ve lost a loved one in a Waipahu car accident, a wrongful death lawyer at Recovery Law Center can discuss your options for pursuing compensation from the at-fault party.
Compensation After a Waipahu Car Accident
Hawaii personal injury laws allow crash victims to recover compensation for damages such as:
- Costs to repair or replace your vehicle
- Cost for medical treatment, including emergency room visits, surgery, prescription medications, co-pays for doctor visits, and physical/occupational therapy
- Long-term care expenses, if the crash leaves you with permanent disabilities
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Lost enjoyment or quality of life
To file a personal injury lawsuit against the negligent party, you must be able to prove that your injuries meet a “serious injury threshold” set by Hawaii law. An experienced car accident attorney at Recovery Law Center can investigate your claim to determine whether you qualify.
Get Help From a Car Accident Lawyer in Waipahu, HI Today
If you were injured in a car crash in Waipahu, you need legal help immediately. Don’t settle with the insurance company until you’ve talked to a car accident attorney.
Our legal team will handle all aspects of preparing and pursuing your car accident case, including investigating the crash, identifying at-fault parties and all potential sources of compensation for you, documenting your losses, bringing in expert witnesses and specialists, and negotiating for a fair and full settlement on your behalf.
While most personal injury claims are settled, our attorneys won’t hesitate to take your case to trial if we believe that’s the best way to recover the money you deserve. Schedule a consultation with our team today.
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