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Where Do The Best & Worst Drivers In America Live?

September 8, 2012

Auto accidents are the leading cause of death and serious personal injury for Americans. Where you live may play a significant role how likely you will be involved in a car accident. Allstate Insurance has recently filed their report on where the best and worst drivers in the US live. According to the report, the safest drivers live in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Where do the worst drivers reside? Allstate says they live in Washington, D.C. In fact, residents of our nation's capital were determined to get into a car accident, on average, once every 4.7 years. That is 112.1 percent higher than the national average.

In attempting to determine where the best and worst drivers live, Allstate looked at the likelihood of a collision compared to the national average and how many years the average driver goes between collisions. Of course, Allstate's report is based only on Allstate drivers. However, Allstate is the second largest personal line insurance carrier in the US only behind State Farm, providing a very large sample from which to measure driver safety.

Below is Allstate's list of the 25 cities with the worst drivers, including statistical information on the likelihood a motorist living in that city will get into an auto accident compared to the national average:

1. Washington, DC: 112.1
2. Baltimore, MD: 87.9%
3. Providence, RI: 80.9%
4. Hialeah, FL: 77.6%
5. Glendale, CA: 77.5%
6. Philadelphia, PA: 64.1%
7. Alexandria, VA: 62.6%
8. Newark, NJ: 59.4%
9. Miami, FL: 58.4%
10. San Francisco, CA: 54.6%
11. Jersey City, NJ: 53.9%
12. Arlington, VA: 53.0%
13. Tampa, FL: 50.2%
14. Los Angeles, CA: 48.5%
15. Paterson, NJ: 46.9%
16. Fullerton, CA: 42.7%
17. Garland, TX: 41.6%
18. Elizabeth, NJ: 41.5%
19. Bridgeport, CT: 41.2%
20. New York, NY: 41.1%
21. New Haven, CT: 37.5%
22. Torrance, CA: 36.7%
23. Norfolk, VA: 36.3%
24. Yonkers, NY: 36.2%
25. Arlington TX: 35.4%

Based on Allstate's report, one state seems to have the worst driver's in the entire country: California has five cities ranked in the top 25. New Jersey was a close second with four cities. Florida and Virginia were tied for third with three cities in the top 25.

The driving accident information provided by Allstate, if valid, is important for two reasons. First, it gives information on which cities Americans may wish to avoid living or visiting if they wish to reduce their risk of being in an auto accident. Second, Allstate's report indirectly provides consumers information on which cities are most likely to have the highest insurance rates given the likelihood of an auto accident in that city.

Finally, although you cannot always choose what city you drive in, you can decide to exercise safe driving practices. Before you even get in your vehicle, make sure it is good mechanical condition which includes your tires, brakes, and windshield wipers. Once in your vehicle, make sure to put your seat belt on and adjust your mirrors and seating position if necessary. While driving, do not allow yourself to be distracted from your full attention on driving. In addition to eating and playing with the radio, cell phone use, particularly texting or emailing while driving, is among the leading causes of auto accidents in our country. No text, email, or phone call is more important than your safety or the safety of others on the road.

Sources Used:

Findlaw, The Worse Drivers In America, September 4, 2012.

NBC News, Worst Drivers In America? Washington, D.C. Takes Honor, August 29, 2012.

Centers For Disease Control, Prevention & Control: Motor Vehicle Safety, last reviewed October 4, 2011.

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