The number and types of motor vehicle crash deaths differ widely among the 50 states and the District of Columbia. A state’s population has an obvious effect on the number of motor vehicle deaths. Fatality rates per capita and per vehicle miles traveled provide a way of examining motor vehicle deaths relative to the population and amount of driving. However, many factors can affect these rates, including types of vehicles driven, travel speeds, rates of licensure, state traffic laws, emergency care capabilities, weather, and topography.
The following facts are based on analysis of data from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS).
Posted December 2019.
Fatal crash totals
There were 33,654 fatal motor vehicle crashes in the United States in 2018 in which 36,560 deaths occurred. This resulted in 11.2 deaths per 100,000 people and 1.13 deaths per 100 million miles traveled. The fatality rate per 100,000 people ranged from 4.4 in the District of Columbia to 22.2 in Mississippi. The death rate per 100 million miles traveled ranged from 0.54 in Massachusetts to 1.83 in South Carolina.
|Population, fatal motor vehicle crashes, motor vehicle crash deaths and motor vehicle crash death rates per state, 2018|
|State||Population||Vehicle miles traveled (millions)||Fatal crashes||Deaths||Deaths per 100,000 population||Deaths per 100 million vehicle miles traveled|
|District of Columbia||702,455||3,691||30||31||4.4||0.84|