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August 22, 2014

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AAA report: Las Vegas car crashes cost society more than $3.7 billion

Image

Steve Marcus

A view of a car after a fatal crash on Flamingo Road near Cambridge/Claymont streets Monday, Aug. 8, 2011. The road was closed in both directions during the investigation.

The next time you pass a crash on the freeway, you may want to keep this number in mind: $1,950.

That’s how much that crash is going to cost you, according to a report released this week by AAA.

The auto club’s report analyzes the cost to society for motor vehicle crashes, and compares that cost to the cost of congestion, or how much people lose sitting in traffic.

The average cost of a fatality on the road is $6 million, AAA said. That includes the cost of emergency responders, travel delays, medical bills, lost wages and productivity and other factors. An injury crash similarly costs $126,000, the report said.

In 2009, the Las Vegas metropolitan area had 144 fatal crashes and 22,595 injuries from crashes, the report said. That puts the cost of fatalities in Las Vegas at $64 million and the cost of injures here at $2.8 billion.

Combined, the total cost of vehicle crashes in Las Vegas that year was $3.7 billion, or $1,950 per person in the metro area.

That puts Las Vegas in eighth place among large metropolitan areas, those between 1 million and 3 million people.

Nationally, car crashes in 2009 cost society $199.5 billion, the report said. There were 33,808 fatal crashes that year across the country, or 93 deaths per day.

To compare, the cost of congestion to society was just $97.7 billion, the report says.

In Las Vegas, the cost of congestion was $673 million, or $481 per person.

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