Channel 4 reports that America’s deadliest stretch of highway happens to be here in Florida. According to the news agency, even though Interstate 95 runs through 15 states, the interstate has the most problems in Florida, according to NHTSA. NHTSA shows that Florida’s part of I-95 has the highest fatality rate of any road in the United States. What is more surprising? Many of the deadly crashes have been in Northeast Florida. Channel 4’s investigation uncovered the worst areas in the region. FHP numbers show that between April 2014 and April 2015 there were 1,713 reported crashes from the Florida-Georgia line to the Flagler-Volusia county line. Of those crashes, 573 involved injuries and 18 caused deaths, claiming 25 lives altogether.
St. Johns County had the most fatal crashes in the region: nine over the last year. That’s half of all deadly crashes on 95’s Northeast Florida stretch. The worst area for wrecks was around County Road 210 where there were 62 accidents, including three deadly ones. The other active spots for wrecks were near International Golf Parkway, State Road 207 and State Road 16.
Duval County had three times the number of pileups, but fewer fatal crashes, with five reported over the past year. Jacksonville’s Northside had the most of I-95’s deadly crashes in the county. Three of them were reported near the airport. The stretch on and near the Fuller Warren Bridge downtown had the highest total number of accidents in the entire region. FHP numbers show 280 reported wrecks in the last year. Of those crashes, 95 involved injuries and one was fatal. The area also has the most traffic in the region, where some spots see around 150,000 vehicles a day. Jacksonville’s other trouble spots were near Emerson Street, J. Turner Butler Boulevard and Old St. Augustine Road.Flagler County had the third highest number of crashes in the region: 93. Of those, 48 involved injuries and two were deadly. The most troublesome areas were near Matanzas Wood Parkway, State Road 100 and Old Dixie Highway.
I-95 through Nassau County had the least crashes in the region over the past year. Records show there were 73 total accidents, 27 with injuries and two where people were killed. The problem areas appear to be near State Road 200 and U.S. 17.
Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Jazmin Grant said, in her opinion, speeders are the No. 1 reason for bad crashes.She said every day she also sees people talking, texting and tweeting on their phones. Grant calls distracted driving a huge problem.She believes people also are getting in crashes because they’re not paying attention to traffic conditions, construction and road changes.
And as we move into Memorial Day weekend, AAA said about 33 million people will be traveling this weekend. With the heaviest travel in 10 years, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows Florida is one of just eight states where accidents are a definitive cause of death. Speeding, reckless driving and DUI will be on the patrol’s radar. AAA Motor Clubs said drivers who have had too much to drink should call for a ride.
To Keep you and your family safe this Memorial Day Weekend, here are some tips:
- Keep your vehicle in good working condition, check tires, clean windows
- Drive when you are emotionally and physically fit to do so
- Use your car’s safety equipment (i.e. wear your seat belt)
- Don’t speed, it gives you less time to react to problems ahead
Click here to see the breakdown of the accidents: http://www.news4jax.com/blob/view/-/33128050/data/1/-/ati6i8/-/FHP-I-95-crash-data.pdf