Traffic deaths are up 50% in Milwaukee — here’s why

| Oct 5, 2020 | Car Accidents

Anyone who spends any time in Milwaukee over the past decade knows that reckless driving is a big safety problem. For years, political leaders and law enforcement have promised to take action to reduce car accidents caused by reckless driving, which includes things like speeding, unsafe turns, running red lights and otherwise ignoring traffic laws.

But despite these vows, reckless drivers in Milwaukee are still causing serious auto accidents. This year, they are largely responsible for a 50% increase in fatal crashes, according to FOX 6 Now Milwaukee. As of Sept. 14, 51 people were killed in traffic accidents in the city in 2020. In 2019, 33 had died as of the same date.

Another troubling fact is that most of those who were killed in reckless driving accidents this year were black. Several of them were children.

What is Milwaukee doing about reckless driving collisions?

In 2019, Mayor Tom Barrett set up the Reckless Driving Task Force to find solutions to the chronic reckless driving problem. That panel made dozens of recommendations, all of which fell into three categories: engineering, education and enforcement. “Engineering” refers to changing the city’s streets to force drivers to stay under control. This would include things like traffic circles, speed bumps, narrower lanes and curb extensions. These are the efforts Barrett wants to focus on.

Meanwhile, acting Police Chief Michael Brunson thinks that educating young people about safe driving is the key. Either way, with COVID-19’s effect on the city’s budget, Milwaukee may not be able to afford major changes anytime soon. Thus, reckless driving will probably continue to cause serious car wrecks in the future. However, there is good news. The number of serious, nonfatal injuries in car accidents is down from 2019, as is the overall number of crashes.

You may not be able to avoid a reckless driver from hurting you, but you can take steps to make sure that the driver and their insurance company pay for your medical bills, lost wages and more.