South Carolina doesn’t officially have the nation’s worst drivers — Louisiana and Texas tie for that honor. Instead, South Carolina drivers come in third.
In fact, South Carolina drivers have ranked among the worst in the nation four out the five years that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has been keeping track. The statistics are compiled based on numerous factors, including careless driving, speeding and roadway fatalities.
The most complete data is available for 2014. Using those records, South Carolina is actually the deadliest state in the nation when it comes to vehicular fatalities. Drivers in the state also play somewhat loose and free with speed limits and are willing to risk getting behind the wheel after a few drinks. Oddly enough, however, drivers in South Carolina are fairly likely to obey traffic signals and wear their seat belts when compared to residents of other states,
The state’s own residents seem to have a mixed view of the statistics. Some agree that local drivers could do better when it comes to learning the rules of the road — they say that they see common mistakes every day that could lead to accidents.
Others, however, blame the roads themselves. They say that many of the state’s roads are rural — more so than many other states. They complain that the rural roads are often poorly kept and lack basic safeguards found on urban roads and highways, like shoulders and safety rails, making it harder to compensate for ordinary traffic issues. The statistics from 2015 might even bear out their theory — of the 977 traffic fatalities in the state, 699 occurred on rural roads.
Regardless of the reasons, drivers in South Carolina do have reason to worry for their safety when they get on the road. If you end up injured in a motor vehicle accident while on South Carolina’s roadways due either to someone’s negligence or a poorly maintained road, consider contacting an attorney for advice about your case. For information on how our firm approaches claims, please visit our page.