California Car Accident Statistics

Statistical data must guide our efforts to keep our roads safe. These numbers identify trends and locate problem areas. For all Californians, and those driving its roads, it’s wise to understand accident trends or at least be aware of locations that may be more dangerous than others.
Here are interactive maps and charts on California motor vehicle accidents. Hover your cursor over these figures to get more details.

Fatal Accidents in California 2017 (Top 10 Counties)

We highlight the 10 California counties with the most number of fatal vehicle accidents in 2017. Los Angeles County leads by far with 658 deadly crashes within that year.

Fatal Accidents in California by County (2017)

Here is a complete look of all the California counties’ fatal crashes in 2017.

Fatal Accidents Per 100,000 Population (2017)

The ratio of accidents to population matters. Some counties may have many accidents simply because they have many people. We want to see if there is a disproportionate number of crashes when compared to the number of people in the area. Here, we see that Alpine County had 357.14 crashes per 100,000 population – the highest rate in California. Compare that with Los Angeles County. Though it had the most number of crashes, it was also one of the most populated. In reality, it only had 6.47 accidents per 100,000 people.

Fatality Rates: California vs. US Average

In general, we’re fortunate in California to have much lower fatality rates than the US average. But in terms of drunk-driving crash fatalities, our state’s numbers have gone up in the last five years while the national average has more or less remained steady. Traffic safety agencies need to address this.

Fatalities Breakdown: Vehicles and Accident Types

Passenger cars were by far the most common vehicle involved in fatal crashes in recent years. We can also see in the second chart (below) that accidents involving large trucks have been increasing since 2013.


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