OAI: Ariz. Auto Insurance Policyholders May Benefit from Lower Crash Rate

September 02, 2011 (PRLEAP.COM) Business News
A decline in the number and costs of car crashes on Arizona roads last year compared to 2009 could be good news not just for public safety officials, but also for consumers hoping to save a few bucks on car coverage, according to OnlineAutoInsurance.com.

The number of fatal crashes fell by 5 percent between 2009 and 2010, and the total economic cost of Arizona auto accidents declined 3 percent.

Industry experts have long stressed the importance of maintaining a clean driving history and the negative impact of accidents on auto insurance rates. The Insurance Information Institute, for example, has stated that the location where a policyholder keeps his or her car-and how common car crashes are in that area-is among the main factors insurers consider when setting premiums.

There were more than 106,000 motor vehicle crashes in the Grand Canyon state in 2010, according to an annual report released this week by the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT). That was down from more than 107,000 the previous year.

The number of fatal crashes also fell, with more than 760 people killed on Arizona roads in 2010, compared to over 800 in 2009.

Statistics on crashes and related deaths plummeted in the five years leading to 2010, ADOT officials reported. In 2006, there were more than 143,500 crashes involving over 1,120 fatalities.

"In an age of limited funding, ADOT is committed to improvements and programs that make our highways safer, ranging from signs that are easier to read day and night, new lanes in strategic locations and working hard to keep the snowplows moving when winter storms hit our high country," ADOT Director John Halikowski said in a news release.

Arizona's reduction in vehicle crash deaths is on pace with a nationwide decline. The total of 33,808 people killed in crashes nationwide in 2009 was the lowest number since 1950, when 33,186 people died in auto accidents.

Source: http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/811363.PDF

Arizona officials pointed out that the violations committed most often by motorists in that state are driving too fast for road conditions and impaired driving.

"We continue to be aggressive with law enforcement efforts" to curtail both illegal practices, said Alberto Gutier, director of the Governor's Office of Highway Safety.

ADOT officials said the share of fatal crashes involving alcohol use fell from 35 percent in 2009 to 30 percent last year.

To learn more about this and other insurance and safety issues, readers can go to http://www.onlineautoinsurance.com/quotes/how-accidents-affect/ where they will find informative resource pages and a rate-comparison generator that can help users quickly evaluate their coverage options.