Whether you are navigating through a New England snow storm or driving along the coast on a perfect July day, Massachusetts roads are only safe when everyone abides by traffic laws. Understanding the common causes of accidents highlights the importance of safe driving practices. 

These are the most recent statistics about auto accidents in Massachusetts. 

Fatalities by miles traveled 

Long trips are safer for Massachusetts drivers than those in other states. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports that based on 2018 data, the state has the fewest number of average fatalities per 100 million miles traveled, just 0.54. By contrast, the highest rate was in South Carolina with 1.83 fatalities on average per 100 million miles driven. 

Fatalities by vehicle and accident type 

IIHS data shows that in Massachusetts, 36% of 2018 fatalities affected car drivers and passengers, and 22% affected pedestrians. Those in SUVs represented 21% of auto accident deaths that year. Sixteen percent of fatalities affected motorcyclists. Just 1% represented those in large trucks and 1% represented cyclists. 

In addition, 59% of fatal 2018 car crashes in Massachusetts involved just one vehicle. In 33% of cases in which blood alcohol content results were available, the driver was above the legal limit at the time of the crash. 

Most dangerous intersections 

The state Department of Transportation reviewed crash data from 2014 to 2016 to find the most hazardous locations. In Worcester, intersections with high accident rates included: 

  • Kelley Square and Water Street, with 138 collisions 
  • Southbridge Street and Hammond Street, with 57 collisions 
  • Harvard Street and Lincoln Square, with 51 collisions 
  • Chandler Street and Mason Street, with 47 collisions 
  • Park Avenue and Maywood Street, with 46 collisions 
  • Main Street and Mill Street, with 43 collisions 
  • Canterbury Street and Washington Street, with 39 collisions 

To reduce your risk for a serious auto accident, avoid driving distractions and substance use. Know what to expect when you travel and be ready to drive defensively to protect yourself.