It is an unfortunate reality that automobile collisions occur frequently on roadways in Montana and throughout the nation. Driver error and negligence is often cited as the source for serious and fatal crashes, however, having a deeper understanding of the causes of car accidents allow for actions to be taken to reduce their occurrences. Whether this is achieved by state campaigns, more patrolling, sobriety checkpoints or road improvements, it is critical that tragic incidents — such as fatal automobile collisions — are properly and timely addressed.

A team of Montana state leaders have planned to meet to discuss what they call a crisis on Montana highways. According to reports, after a recent deadly crash, the fatality count on state roads this year has reached 33. Compared to last year at this time, this number was at just 13. Additionally, an increase in 17 percent of deaths occurred in 2014.

This surge in fatal auto accidents has resulted in legislators and leaders in the state to address this issue and determine ways to make the roadways safer for travelers. The timing of this meeting is imperative as well. June, July and August historically have the highest number of fatalities, and with summer just around the corner, measures need to be taken to reduce the number of fatalities occurring on Montana roads.

While there is no obvious reason at this time for the uptick in fatalities, speeding and driver impairment are common factors that cause highway crashes. Additionally, the most common factor that leads to fatalities is the lack of seat-belt use. Addressing these issues might help initiate the safety plan for the state.

While state initiatives can help reduce serious and fatal accidents, this unfortunately does not prevent them from occurring. Because of that, accident victims and their loved ones should understand that recourses might be available to them if a negligent party caused the accident that injured them or killed a loved one. A wrongful death claim or a personal injury suit could help them recover compensation for losses and damages caused by the incident.

Source:, “Montana leaders to address increase in highway fatalities,” Kim Briggeman, March 14, 2016