New Port Richey consistently has a fatal accident rate higher than the statewide average. Since 1995, New Port Richey’s rate of fatal accidents only fell below Florida’s statewide rate in 1997 and 2008. In 2020, the city’s fatal accident rate was nearly 150% higher than the statewide rate.
This means that accidents in New Port Richey are deadlier than accidents in other parts of the state. One reason for this is the high number of pedestrian accidents, bicycle accidents, and motorcycle accidents in the area. These vulnerable road users have a much higher risk of serious injury or death than motor vehicle passengers.
Before you take a ride on the roads in the area, here are some New Port Richey car accident statistics and lessons you can learn from them.
Traffic Accidents in Pasco County
Pasco County had 7,327 traffic accidents in 2020. This represented a drop of nearly 6% from 2019. These accidents caused 6,363 injuries. This was about 0.8% lower than the number of injuries that occurred in 2019.
But 2020 was also an unusual year for traffic. Nationwide, traffic dropped by over 13% due to pandemic lockdowns, a drop in leisure travel, and a shift to remote work for many workers. The drop in traffic accidents in Pasco County in 2020 was in line with expectations based on national trends.
2020 also saw a slight increase in traffic deaths in Pasco County. Traffic fatalities increased from 97 in 2019 to 107 in 2020. This increase was also expected.
Nationwide, traffic deaths increased by about 5% in 2020. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) blamed the increase in deaths on:
- Speeding due to reduced traffic congestion
- An increase in impaired driving during the pandemic
- Lower rates of seat belt use
Florida’s crash statistics include a three-year average for accidents, deaths, and injuries that smooth out the variations in the data.
Traffic Accidents in New Port Richey
New Port Richey does not publish a crash data report. But the county-wide data provides some insights into accidents in New Port Richey.
Within the city limits, New Port Richey had five fatal accidents in 2019. These accidents killed seven people, including three pedestrians and four motorists. One of these accidents, on US-19 near S Road, involved a drunk driver who ran over a pedestrian.
The most dangerous roads and intersections in New Port Richey include:
- US-19, which had 1,380 accidents, 354 injuries, and 11 deaths
- Madison Street, which had over 100 accidents and two deaths
- Congress Street, which had over 30 accidents and one death
Throughout the county, US-19 sees more traffic accidents than any other road. The most dangerous intersection in Pasco County is at the intersection of US-19 and Ridge Road, the site of 66 traffic accidents.
The intersection at US-19 and Sunray Boulevard is also dangerous, with 22 injury accidents in a single year.
Causes of Traffic Accidents in New Port Richey
The most common causes of traffic accidents in New Port Richey include several preventable driver behaviors. According to statewide statistics, careless operation causes more accidents than any other behavior.
Under Florida law, police officers can cite you for careless driving when you fail to drive carefully and prudently. Careless drivers fail to account for the width, grade, curves, corners, and traffic they encounter.
Some examples of careless driving include:
- Distracted driving
- Failing to use a turn signal
- Failing to come to a complete stop
- Drifting into another lane
- Improper lookout
- Misjudging the distance or speed of another vehicle
The second most common cause of accidents in New Port Richey is failure to yield the right of way. This often results from distracted, aggressive, or intoxicated driving.
Improper lane changes, tailgating, and speeding round out the top five causes of car accidents in New Port Richey. These five causes underlie about half of all traffic accidents in the local area.
DUI Accidents in New Port Richey
Pasco County had 262 DUI crashes in 2020. 177 of these crashes involved alcohol, 71 involved drugs, and 14 involved both drugs and alcohol. These accidents killed 47 people and injured 176 people.
All of these numbers increased from 2019. This increase was expected. Alcohol consumption increased during the pandemic. Law enforcement officers expected DUI crashes to increase, as well.
Motorcycle Accidents in New Port Richey
New Port Richey had 257 motorcycle crashes in 2020. Of these, 235 caused injuries, while 21 caused fatalities. This means that motorcycle accident victims had a shocking 99.6% chance of getting injured or killed in the accidents that occurred that year.
These numbers are high. Motorcycle crashes made up 3.5% of all crashes in New Port Richey. But motorcycle accident fatalities were 19.6% of all traffic fatalities in New Port Richey. This means that motorcycle accident victims were 5.6 times more likely to die than the victims of auto accidents.
Pedestrian and Bicycle Accidents in New Port Richey
New Port Richey had 161 bicycle accidents. These accidents killed 13 cyclists and injured 146 others. Again, this means that bicycle accident victims were almost guaranteed to get either killed or injured in their accidents.
Similarly, New Port Richey had 171 pedestrian accidents. 23 pedestrians died and 135 pedestrians were injured in these accidents. 92.4% of pedestrian accident victims suffered an injury or death.
Lessons Drawn from New Port Richey Car Accident Statistics
New Port Richey has a reputation as one of the most dangerous places to drive in the state. It has many busy roads. This means that drivers in New Port Richey run the risk of a car accident every time they drive.
But these accidents arise largely from correctable driver behaviors. Slowing down, exercising a little bit more caution, and putting away the phone will help you reduce your risk of getting into a car accident.
If you ride a motorcycle, you should always wear a helmet. The risk of injury or death in a motorcycle accident is extremely high, and a helmet can help reduce the severity of any injury you suffer.
If you’ve been injured in New Port Richey, you’re not alone.
To discuss your injuries in a New Port Richey car accident, motorcycle accident, pedestrian accident, or bicycle accident, contact our attorneys in New Port Richey at Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers. Schedule a free consultation to learn about the compensation you can seek for your injuries. Don’t hesitate and give us a call at (727) 815-8442.