Car Crashes Costing Michigan Drivers

heading divider

Which costs Michigan residents more: crime or car accidents? The answer (car crashes) might not surprise you, but you might find the difference between the two shocking.

Crime is costly, but the property damage, medical costs, and other expenses associated with motor vehicle crashes add up to far more. In fact, for every dollar of loss tied to a crime, there are more than $7 in crash-related costs.

Enormous Impacts

Crime grabs the headlines, and that might make it seem like a much greater problem, but car crashes are far more costly. In the latest report comparing the two, the Michigan Office of Highway Planning determined that in 2015, violent crimes and theft cost Michigan residents about $622 million in direct costs. That year, traffic crash costs were more than $4.6 billion.

That’s for strictly measurable costs. When non-economic costs, such as pain and suffering, were factored in, both amounts rose sharply, with crime costs running to $2.6 billion, but traffic crash expenses spiking to $19.3 billion. That’s up dramatically since the report, which has been issued about every five years, first pegged the direct cost of crashes at $2.3 billion (and $7.1 billion in total costs) in 1988.

Surprising Numbers

The full report, a 443-page effort, dives deep into the statistics and also breaks things down by county. In Oakland County, where our office is located, for instance, there were nearly 72,000 crashes with injury or damage reported, but only 15,000 serious crimes. In Wayne County, the average cost of a serious crime was estimated at $55,000, while the average cost in a DUI crash there was close to $290,000.

Another sobering statistic in the report is that in all of Michigan that year there were 539 murders, but nearly twice that number of people—1,011—died in car crashes.

No-Fault Insurance Offers Some Relief

Michigan is unique in providing lifetime medical benefits to those seriously injured in motor vehicle crashes. Not everyone is a fan of the system, especially since many state residents pay more for insurance than they would in states without no-fault. But the state entity that pays those claims spent about $1.2 billion in the last complete fiscal year, which might otherwise have not been covered or might have come straight out of victims’ pockets.

Detroit Car Accident Lawyer

When you’ve been harmed in a car crash because of the actions of another, no matter what the circumstances, it’s important to discuss the situation with an experienced attorney. The no-fault system might provide the benefits you need, but often you still need to fight for them. There are many cases when you should also file a personal injury claim against the driver who caused the harm to make sure you are fully compensated.

The team at Christensen Law has helped many clients reach successful settlements in our car accident cases. Give us a call at 248-213-4900 or contact us online through the form below to schedule a no-cost, no-obligation consultation to review your case.