According to New Jersey State Police, 2017 was the deadliest year on New Jersey roadways in a decade, with 624 deaths reported in all types of traffic accidents statewide. Officials report that while many factors have contributed to the increase in fatal wrecks, the most pressing concerns are distracted driving, speeding, drunk and impaired motorists, and increases in auto accidents involving bicyclists and pedestrians, who are most vulnerable to suffering severe and deadly injuries when struck by passenger vehicles.
In an effort to identify where fatal crash risks are highest, data from State Police and recently released statistics for 2017 from the New Jersey Department of Transportation were used to rank the state’s deadliest highways.
New Jersey’s deadliest highways include:
- Deadliest NJ Highway in 2017: Garden State Parkway – The nearly 200-mile long Garden State Parkway led the state in fatal accidents in 2017 with 25 reported fatalities. Although that number was the highest number of deaths on any New Jersey highway, it was 7 less than the number of fatal wrecks reported on the Parkway in 2016.
- Second Deadliest Highway: New Jersey Turnpike – One of New Jersey’s most recognizable highways, the 148-mile New Jersey Turnpike, saw 21 deaths in 2017, the same number it recorded in the previous year. Officials cite heavy traffic and high rates of commercial truck and vehicle accidents among the Turnpike’s most pressing dangers.
- Third: Interstate 80 – New Jersey’s nearly 70-mile section of Interstate 80 saw 16 fatalities last year, 6 more than the 10 reported in 2016. Officials note the highway averages as much as 150,000 vehicles in daily traffic on one section of the I-80 within Passaic County.
- Fourth: Route 1 – With a slight increase over the previous year, 2017 saw 15 victims killed in crashes on Route 1 in New Jersey, which runs between the George Washington Bridge and Trenton.
- Seventh (Tie): Route 30, Interstate 295, and Route 130 – There were a total of 13 fatalities reported on Route 30, Interstate 295 (where fatal crash rates nearly doubled from 2016), and Route 130 (which Burlington County officials have called the most dangerous road in New Jersey for pedestrians six years in a row).
- Ninth (Tie): Route 9 and Interstate 78 – Interstate 78 and Route 27 both had 10 reported fatalities in 2017. High volumes of traffic on I-78 and issues involving vehicles turning from parking lots and side streets on Route 27 were cited as contributing factors behind fatal accidents on these highways.
- Eleventh: Route 70 – Route 70, which runs through Camden and Monmouth Counties, saw eight fatalities in traffic accidents last years.
- Twelfth: Route 55 – Route 55 was ranked as the twelfth deadliest New Jersey Highway with 11 reported traffic deaths in 2017. With plans to complete the highway through the Jersey Shore, officials are seeking additional safety improvements.
- Fourteenth (Tie): Route 73 and Route 42 – Both highways had six traffic deaths in 2017, despite their short length (29 miles and 14 miles respectively).
- Sixteenth (Tie): Interstate 287 and Route 440 – Although fatalities on Interstate 287 dropped between 2016 and 2017 from 7 reported deaths to 5, the 5 reported fatalities on Route 440 are seen as a significant jump following the previous year, when no fatalities were reported.
Fighting for Victims & Families Following New Jersey Auto Accidents
Levinson Axelrod, P.A. is a nationally recognized personal injury and workers’ compensation law firm that has been fighting for victims and families throughout New Jersey since 1939. Over the years, our firm has seen how preventable acts of negligence can lead to motor vehicle accidents that upend the lives of victims and their loved ones, and urges everyone to make safety a priority whenever they are behind the wheel of a motor vehicle. This is especially important when traveling highways where high rates of speed and dense traffic make a devastating recipe for serious wrecks, catastrophic injuries, and death.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a highway accident in New Jersey due to another’s negligence – or if you have lost a loved one in a preventable fatal wreck – our caring and compassionate team is here to help protect your rights as you navigate the personal injury or wrongful death process. We know damages and preventable losses can be devastating, and are committed to fighting for justice, accountability, and full compensation.
Discuss a potential case with an attorney at no cost. Contact us to get started.