Virginia has a reputation for having bad drivers. While it is hard to put a precise definition on who is a bad driver, many who take the time to rank states based on driver quality focus on things like speeding tickets, drunk driving arrests and accidents.
With these factors in mind, the Virginia government’s own statistics suggest that there might be some truth to the rumors.
For example, in 2020, when people were not traveling as many miles, the Commonwealth still saw 105,600 accidents on its roads. In these accidents, 847 people died, which was more than the number of fatalities in 2019. Approximately 52,700 additional people suffered injuries serious enough to merit reporting.
What is particularly disturbing is the number of these crashes which were related to alcohol or to excessive speeding.
In 2020, for example, the government attributed 6,624 accidents to alcohol. Moreover, alcohol-related crashes caused 270 fatalities of the 847 total deaths in the state.
With respect to speeding, in 2020, there were almost 22,480 accidents in which excessive speed was a contributing factor. Over 405 of the 847 traffic fatalities were related to speeding.
Drivers who speed or drive drunk can be held accountable for their actions
While it is difficult from these figures alone to conclude that Virginia has below average drivers, they do paint a picture that many drivers in this state continue to speed and drive under the influence despite their being ample warnings that these behaviors are dangerous.
When these unsafe behaviors cause motor vehicle accidents, the statistics also show that serious injuries and especially fatalities are more likely to result.
Victims, including families of those who lose loved ones in an accident, have the legal right to receive fair compensation from those who chose to drive irresponsibly.