By on November 23, 2011

Some 369,629 Americans lost their lives on the road in the period from 2001 through 2009. Now ITO World has mapped every single one of them onto an interactive map that promises hours of morbid fun. Where do accidents happen? Who do they happen to? What kind of vehicles tend to be involved? Are there high-fatality areas near you? The answers to these questions and more await in this one-of-a-kind map.

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30 Comments on “Ten Years Of Traffic Fatalities In One Interactive Map...”

  • avatar

    Very interesting map. I’m seeing a lot of elderly pedestrians in the boston area. Ed, you ask what kind of vehicles. I don’t see how to get that info. Pls advise.

  • avatar

    I see the child pedestrian accident that happened a half mile from my house in ’02.

    Since the data only goes through 2009, I notice that two more recent deaths near me are not listed – one is a 12-year-old passenger this past May, another is a 71-year-old pedestrian just this past Oct 31.

    Brings back very bad memories for many people, I’m sure.

    I’d like to see this data updated to show the before/after red light camera implementations.

  • avatar

    No matter how you figure it, 2001-2009 is a maximum period of only 9 years.

  • avatar

    Notice how all the accidents stop as soon as you cross the border into Canada. This may seem strange at first, but the same is true with the weather. All storms stop as soon as they reach the border. Check it out on the Weather Channel.

    • 0 avatar

      We’re all driving slow enough to evade the moose, muskox and polar bears roaming the streets that fatalities just don’t happen.

      And referring to another post here, our HOV lanes are constantly clogged up with dog-sleds. I’ve been complaining to our representatives at the Great Igloo, but have had no response so far. Maybe they’ll get word to me once the ice bridges are established.

    • 0 avatar

      Notice how all the accidents stop as soon as you cross the border into Canada.

      Dog sled fatalities aren’t included in the data.

  • avatar

    Curious as to what happened on Catalina Island … also curious as to why there’s an incident shown in the water between Catalina and Huntington Beach (CA).

    • 0 avatar

      It says a 42 year old pedestrian. Perhaps someone went swimming and was hit by a boat. I find it hard to believe that someone who could walk on water was killed.

    • 0 avatar

      Sitka, Alaska, with a few dozen miles of road unconnected to the national network, managed to have five road deaths in the period.

      In my own area of Maryland, a four mile stretch of winding two-lane had seven deaths, while a parallel stretch of six-lane road two miles away carrying far more, and faster traffic had only three.

  • avatar

    My gosh… save the children!!

  • avatar

    Immediately, my eyes were drawn to the orange blob along 129 between TN and NC… as well as some of the twisties into north GA. In recent years, the Dragon went from a well kept secret to an all-out circus. The age metrics are a fascinating addition as well – helps to break (or confirm) certain stereotypes.

    I hate to look at it this way, but it really seems that concentrations of orange indicate “really fun road!”

  • avatar

    Unless the Fire Truck hit someone at Mackinac Island, Michigan I don’t know how there was a traffic fatality, since cars or any other motorized vehicle are not allowed in there. Maybe a golf cart accident?

    It is pretty shocking when I saw all the deaths along roads I travel every day, sad too.

  • avatar

    sigh.. found my mother’s accident when she rolled over in her Mercedes ML

  • avatar

    Ages are interesting here in Manchester CT lots of the highway deaths appear to be in drunk driving prime years late 20’s to early 30’s while there were a number of elderly deaths on slower suburban st’s.

  • avatar

    …and fools are still busy worrying about terrorists bombing their plane.

    • 0 avatar

      You make an excellent point. Not only are such activities low in actual deaths, they are exceedingly difficult to carry out, especially now.

      • 0 avatar

        I found the age stats interesting, as well. In my town (college town, 90 miles south of Pittsburgh, with a static population of 24k and 30k+ students who are seasonal), with the exception of a handful of outliers – mostly on I68 and I79, which meet just outside of town – they were all between the ages of 18-24 or 60-98 (!). I would say those two age groups comprise 90% of the fatalities here. And even more interestingly, those two age groups have just about an equal share of the fatalities. Someone should tell insurance companies…

        I, too, found a few people I knew…

        Kudos to the above comment about terrorists bombing planes. Relatedly, yet still off-topic, the radio had a report about shark attacks this morning, having to do with the upcoming live event on the National Geographic channel. You have a 1-in-11 chance of dying from the flu, and a 1-in-8 million chance of dying by shark attack. Yet which gets more attention and stirs more fear in the average person?

  • avatar
    87CE 95PV Type Я

    I see numerous accidents that dad has responded to as an EMT/Firefighter in the Twin Tiers Region and you know, most of them were preventable if people just obeyed the speed limit, realized that 55 may be the speed limit, but it is not a good idea, and slowed down for conditions.

  • avatar

    It’s a little chilling that you can blow the map up to a certain point and trace out the entire Interstate Highway System. I thought the interstates were supposed to have a better safety record than many local roads. Does that get overshadowed by the higher traffic volume on the interstates?

    • 0 avatar

      That works even at a more local level – when I blow up the map for my rural county in Oregon, you can easily trace our major roads. I think it’s just the higher traffic volume for major routes – we have a couple of major highways (non-interstates), and I could trace their routes accurately based on the dots. There are other deaths in the county, but so few they do not trace a clear highway route.

    • 0 avatar

      The death rate by passenger miles on divided highways is a small fraction of the death rate in two lane roads.


  • avatar

    Where I live I noticed a disproportionate amount of motorcycle deaths. Considering that the volume of automobile traffic vastly outnumbers that of motorcycles, that bike deaths should be such a large percentage of overall deaths is scary.

    • 0 avatar

      There’s a reason they call them donor-cycles.

    • 0 avatar

      Depending on the source consulted, a motorcyclist is – per mile travelled – between 15 and 35 times as likely to die in an accident as someone in a 4-wheel vehicle.

      We riders tell ourselves that if we wear a helmet, attend motorcycle school, don’t drink & ride, avoid “peak death” hours such as the wee hours from Friday through Sunday, and don’t ride like an idiot, we can manage the risk. Truth is, motorcyling is outright dangerous.

    • 0 avatar

      where do you live?

  • avatar
    Sam P

    I don’t see the accident where a high school classmate lost her life back in December of ’05. It was on a deserted rural road that is pretty easy to pick out.

  • avatar

    It’s a little sobering to see this map, then zoom in on the dot that was my fault. Great demo for my next driver’s ed class discussion -if nothing else gets through to these kids, maybe this one will.

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