The True Cost of a Crash for Consumers and Businesses

  • May 4, 2018
  • Will Modelevsky

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) there were 6.1 million car crashes in 2014, resulting in 2.3 million people injured and over 32,000 fatalities. NHTSA reports the total annual cost of accidents to be nearly $900 billion.

But what are the potential costs to you if you get in a crash?

Potential Costs of a Crash Beyond the Vehicle

That can be more difficult to predict because not all crashes are alike. Factors like location and severity vary widely. According to NHTSA, a minor accident might cost around $6,000 in medical expenses, household productivity loss and lost wages. In the most severe collisions, those three factors can add up to over a million dollars. Worse still, according to AAA, the Department of Transportation estimates the cost of a fatality at over $6 million. The same study estimates the average medical cost for an injury at $126,000.

And we haven’t even talked about the car yet.

According to the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association, the average liability claim for property damage was $3,231. This is obviously a cost borne by the insurance companies, but eventually the costs get passed on to the consumer. According to one study, filing a single claim can result in up to a 67% increase in a driver’s premiums.

More Expensive Cars Means Costlier Crashes

There is no doubt that a car crash is costly, in fact the complexity of new cars and some of the advanced technologies designed to prevent crashes and protect passengers can increase the repair cost of an automobile damaged in a collision. Safety features such as autonomous braking systems, lane-drift alerts, air bags, sensors and cameras can be expensive to repair or replace.

For the individual driver, a car crash can be an unexpected disaster. For a fleet manager, especially with large fleets, it can be a recurring event whose cost must be managed as part of business planning. There are also rental car expenses and the risk of higher insurance rates or the loss of coverage.

Crash Solutions from CalAmp

In both cases, CalAmp telematics solutions can help by providing instant crash alerts to speed emergency response time, offer predictive physical damage to determine the severity of the crash, and help in reconstructing the collision to establish what happened. CalAmp’s Crashboxx™ Instant Crash Alert technology is a key feature in the LoJack® SureDrive™ connected car mobile app. To learn more about CalAmp’s crash management solutions, visit our Crashboxx™ page.