Chances are, if you’ve been driving for a while, you’ve probably seen road conditions or other people’s driving habits that seem more than a little scary. While it’s always important to be alert behind the wheel, there are some roadways that may need an extra amount of caution.
So buckle up, because here are the top five most dangerous routes in the United States, according to 2016-2019 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration fatality data analyzed by a team at Teletrac Navman.
1. Interstate 4, Florida
Florida has some of the deadliest roads in America, with a staggering three out of the top five most dangerous routes finding their home in the Sunshine State. Interstate 4 is by far the deadliest in the nation, chalking up 150 fatalities from 2016-2019. The interstate itself is 132 miles long, so that means there’s an average of over 1.1 deaths per mile of this road.
Interstate 4 runs across central Florida from Daytona Beach to Tampa. It’s a major transportation route connecting several cities in the state and has as many as six lanes of traffic in several places. Orlando is the interstate’s deadliest city at 11 fatalities from 2016-2019.
The most common cause of death along I-4 are collisions, overturned vehicles, and cars striking pedestrians.
2. Interstate 45, Texas
Interstate 45 is a 285-mile long interstate that stretches in a north/south direction from Dallas all the way to Galveston, Texas. It has had 260 fatalities from 2016-2019, with 92 of them occurring in Houston. That means Interstate 45 has a fatality rate of over .91 deaths per mile.
According to data from 2011-2015 accident reports, drunk drivers are common on this interstate. For instance, recently there was a fatal accident in Houston involving three separate vehicles. All three drivers were charged with driving while intoxicated. Besides drunk driving, Interstate 45 had several accidents related to poorly lit areas, according to the same 2011-2015 data.
3. Route 192, Florida
At 75 miles long, running east to west in central Florida from Kissimmee to the Melbourne area, Route 192 has had 65 fatalities from 2016-2019. This gives the highway a fatality rate of over .86 deaths per mile.
Route 192 is a major tourist area, as it runs just south of Orlando near Disneyworld, terminating within a mile of the Atlantic Ocean. Along the route is plenty of wacky, and possibly distracting, attractions that attempt to cash in on tourists. It’s no surprise that this highway’s deadliest month is June, at the height of Florida’s summer season.
4. Interstate 17, Arizona
Interstate 17 connects Flagstaff, Arizona to Phoenix, and is located right in the center of Arizona. Because of its connection to Phoenix, I-17 is a major commuter interstate for those traveling into the city for work.
The interstate is a total of 146 miles long and had 103 fatalities from 2016-2019, which comes out to over .7 deaths per mile of road. The deadliest city along this interstate is unsurprisingly the largest, Phoenix, with 39 fatalities within the same time frame.
5. Route 92, Florida
Like the number one ranked dangerous road Interstate 4, Route 92 is located in central Florida, running from Daytona Beach to St. Petersburg. It’s a total of 177 miles long and had 125 fatalities from 2016-2019, giving it a fatality rate of just over .7 deaths per mile. Tampa, located near the westernmost end of the highway, is the deadliest city along the route, with 18 fatalities occurring from 2016-2019. Interestingly, the month that averaged the most fatalities in January, so be careful if you're traveling to your off-season timeshare.
Learning and implementing basic road safety is a must when traveling on these, and any other roads across the country. Brush up on your driving skills, so you and your family are safe on your next summer road trip.