In New York, insurance companies use complex models to estimate the frequency of car accidents and have found that the average driver files a car accident claim about once every 18 years.
Certain factors play into a driver’s chances of avoiding accidents, and the safest drivers have the lowest risk of having a car accident.
The safest drivers and accident claims
According to insurance company statistics, the safest drivers file an accident claim only once every 25 to 30 years. If you are a slightly safer-than-average driver, you can expect to file an accident claim about once every 20 to 24 years. You may never file an accident claim if you are a significantly safer and luckier driver.
What makes someone a safe driver?
Insurance companies determine policy premiums by feeding hundreds of risk factors for car accidents into a model that calculates the probability of an individual having an accident based on their personal details.
Safe driving depends on the following factors:
- Age: Drivers under age 20 or older than 70 fall into higher risk categories and will pay higher premiums.
- Average miles driven: regardless of driving skill, the more miles you drive, the higher your risk of being in an accident.
- Time of day: If you drive on weekends or at night, you have a higher chance of getting into an accident.
- Gender: Accident statistics show that males aged 25 or younger are the most likely to cause fatal car accidents, so they pay higher insurance rates than either gender at any other age.
- Prevention: Safer drivers use preventative measures such as seatbelts, defensive driving and good braking and acceleration practices. They also avoid cell phone use while driving and take other steps to reduce their accident risk.
- Luck: Some drivers have three accidents within five years, even though they are not at fault. Other drivers never have an accident in their entire time behind the wheel. Luck, whether you like it or not, also plays a part.
Accident rates are increasing
Motor vehicle accidents and traffic fatalities have increased over the past few years. While the roads have become much safer than 50 years ago, fatal accident rates have not significantly changed since 2012.
In 2014, one of the safest traffic years on record, there were almost 12 fatalities for every 100,000 registered vehicles in the U.S. Conversely, 2020 was one of the worst years regarding safety, with just over 13 fatalities per 100,000 U.S. registered vehicles.
The safest drivers consider factors that can increase their safety and take measures to reduce car accident risks.