Tampa is one of the largest metropolitan areas in Florida, with over 3 million residents across Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco, and Hernando counties. This bustling region sees heavy traffic on roads and highways every day. Unfortunately, with more cars on the move comes a higher risk of motor vehicle crashes.
At CDB Injury Law, we wanted to bring awareness to the alarming rate of car accidents happening right here in our Tampa community. By understanding key facts and statistics about these crashes, drivers can be better informed to make safer choices on the road. We all have a responsibility to help reduce accidents and injuries in Tampa.
Below we reveal 5 shocking and sobering facts about car crashes in Tampa and across Hillsborough County.
1. Over 28,000 Car Accidents Occurred in Tampa in 2021
Data from the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles shows that there were 28,316 traffic crashes reported by law enforcement in the City of Tampa in 2021. This averages out to over 75 car accidents occurring per day locally.
To put this into perspective, Tampa has nearly double the amount of car crashes compared to other major Florida cities:
- Jacksonville had 15,560 crashes
- Orlando had 14,833 crashes
- Miami had 12,604 crashes
With so many collisions happening on Tampa streets, drivers need to take extra care to prevent contributing to these accident statistics. Defensive driving techniques like maintaining safe distances, signaling properly, and avoiding distractions can help reduce crash risks.
2. Car Accidents in Tampa Increased 17% From 2020 to 2021
According to Florida DMV data, while there was a dip in accidents in 2020 due to less traffic from COVID-19 restrictions, crashes surged in 2021 as roads became busier again.
- In 2020, there were 24,218 total crashes in Tampa.
- In 2021, crashes jumped up to 28,316.
- This represents a 17% increase in car accidents in just a single year.
This sharp rise in collisions shows the need for better safe driving campaigns and enforcement of traffic laws in Tampa. As more residents return to offices, schools, and normal activities, officials must take steps to prevent an ongoing escalation in accidents on local roads.
3. Speeding Contributed to 37% of Fatal Crashes in Tampa
Excessive speed is a major factor in deadly crashes occurring in Tampa. Data from the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles reveals that over the past few years, speeding contributed to 37% of all fatal car accidents in the city of Tampa.
Speeding reduces a driver’s ability to steer safely around curves or objects in the roadway. Higher speeds also increase the distance necessary to stop a vehicle, which can turn a minor fender bender into a major collision.
The Florida Highway Patrol has launched focused enforcement campaigns to crack down on speeding locally. But drivers also need to take personal responsibility to obey posted speed limits, especially on high-risk roads like I-275, I-4, and I-75 which see frequent fatal crashes.
4. Over 100 Pedestrians Were Killed in Tampa Crashes in 2021
One of the most tragic facts about car accidents in Tampa is the high number of pedestrian fatalities each year. Vulnerable road users like people walking or biking account for many of the lives lost in motor vehicle crashes locally.
In 2021 alone, 106 pedestrians lost their lives after being struck by a vehicle in the city of Tampa, either from injuries at the scene or later in the hospital. This represents over one pedestrian killed every 3-4 days on average.
Contributing factors to many of these pedestrian accidents include:
- Speeding vehicles
- Failure to yield right-of-way to pedestrians in crosswalks
- Distracted driving
- Poor lighting conditions
- Pedestrians wearing dark non-reflective clothing at night
Tampa was ranked the 4th most dangerous metro region for pedestrians in Smart Growth America’s recent “Dangerous By Design” report. Drivers in Tampa must be extra vigilant watching for people walking or biking near the roadway. Safety improvements like more crosswalks and lighting could also help reduce pedestrian deaths.
5. Hillsborough County Had the Most Car Crash Deaths in Florida in 2020
Zooming out beyond just the Tampa city limits, Hillsborough County as a whole saw the highest number of motor vehicle fatalities among all counties in Florida in 2020, based on data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
- There were 244 car accident deaths in Hillsborough County in 2020 – more than any other county including larger counties like Miami-Dade (228 deaths) and Broward (218 deaths).
While final 2021 county-level data is still being compiled, Hillsborough County will likely again rank among the highest in the state for traffic fatalities.
The high rate of deadly crashes in Hillsborough demonstrates the need for improved road safety initiatives and enforcement regionally:
- More driver education programs
- Awareness campaigns about leading crash factors
- Improved infrastructure like rumble strips and barrier medians
- Increased use of in-vehicle technology like crash avoidance systems
With bustling cities like Tampa and Plant City located in Hillsborough, all agencies and drivers here must prioritize reducing accident injuries and deaths.
Take Action to Prevent Car Accidents in Tampa
This data paints a sobering picture about the prevalence of car crashes right here in our Tampa community. However, awareness is the first step toward positive change. By understanding the most common causes of accidents locally, we can work together to enhance traffic safety.
Here are some tips all Tampa drivers can follow to help decrease collisions and save lives:
- Obey speed limits and slow down. Excess speed is a factor in over a third of fatal crashes.
- Eliminate distractions like cell phones while driving.
- Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and watch carefully for people walking or biking near the roadway.
- Leave proper distance between vehicles and avoid tailgating.
- Signal all turns in advance.
- Never drive impaired under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Arrange for a sober ride.
- Focus on defensive driving techniques by being alert and anticipating potential hazards.
At CDB Injury Law, our Tampa car accident attorney is here to help traffic crash victims get their lives back on track after a collision. We assist injured clients with investigating accident liability, navigating insurance claims, accessing quality medical treatment, and pursuing fair compensation in your case.
If you or a loved one have been harmed in a car crash in Tampa, contact our experienced legal team for a free consultation at (727) 656-7852. Together, we can work to improve roadway safety while also getting you the recovery you deserve after an accident.