Most Dangerous States to Drive

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15. Idaho
> Road deaths per 100,000:
13.3
> Total roadway fatalities in 2013: 214
> Pct. of residents using seatbelt: 62%

The car accident fatality rate of 13.3 deaths for every 100,000 residents on Idaho roads is slightly higher the national rate of 10.3 fatalities for every 100,000 residents. As in many of the states with the highest rate of roadway fatalities, drivers and passengers in Idaho are less likely to use a seatbelt. While about 87% of Americans use a seatbelt, in Idaho, only 62% buckle up, the smallest share of any state in the country.

14. Kentucky
> Road deaths per 100,000:
14.5
> Total roadway fatalities in 2013: 638
> Pct. of residents using seatbelt: 85%

With 14.5 deaths for every 100,000 residents, fatal accidents on the road are more common in Kentucky than they are across the country, where the corresponding rate is 10.3 deaths per 100,000 residents. Rural roads are more dangerous than urban ones, which can partially explain the high rate of deadly accidents Kentucky. As many as 58% of miles traveled in Kentucky are in rural areas, and 77% of car accident fatalities happen on rural roadways.

13. New Mexico
> Road deaths per 100,000:
14.9
> Total roadway fatalities in 2013: 310
> Pct. of residents using seatbelt: 92%

Like in many of the most dangerous states to drive, motorists in New Mexico primarily travel on rural roads. Roughly 57% of all vehicle miles driven in the state are through rural areas. More frequent rural driving likely contributed to the relatively high deadly accident rate. There were 14.9 deaths on the road for every 100,000 state residents in 2013, making New Mexico one of the most dangerous states to drive in the country.

12. Wyoming
> Road deaths per 100,000:
14.9
> Total roadway fatalities in 2013: 87
> Pct. of residents using seatbelt: 82%

With 14.9 deaths for every 100,000 residents, fatal accidents on the road are much more common in Wyoming than they are across the United States, where the corresponding rate is 10.3 deaths per 100,000 residents.

A much larger share of deadly accidents in Wyoming occur in rural areas. While just over half of all deadly roadway collisions in the country happen in rural localities, the corresponding rate in Wyoming of 83% is significantly higher. This may not be surprising because, with only only a handful of major urban areas, the vast majority of Wyoming is rural.

11. Louisiana
> Road deaths per 100,000:
15.2
> Total roadway fatalities in 2013: 703
> Pct. of residents using seatbelt: 83%

With 15.2 deaths on the road for every 100,000 state residents in 2013, Louisiana is one of the most dangerous states to in which to drive in the country. A high rate of vehicle-related death typically accompanies a high fatality rate per mile driven. The rates in Louisiana are no exception. While there are an average of 1.11 deaths on American roadways for every 100 million vehicle miles traveled, there are 1.51 deaths for every 100 million vehicle miles in Louisiana.