Yesterday I contacted NHTSA and IIHS and asked them if they would be able to look at their data on underride deaths and break them out by State. They both graciously made it a priority and created some new charts, graphs, and a map.
The pdf from NHTSA has data taken from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS), by which NHTSA collects information on fatal crashes from each state. This extensive chart covers the time period of 1994 to 2015, showing underride deaths when the initial collision was at the front, side, and rear of trailers — first for the country, followed by a similar format for each state. Numbers are shown one year at a time and then totaled:
Please remember that it is well-known that underride deaths are under-counted in these charts. In fact, Lois Durso and I both have found that our daughters deaths are not accurately reported in these charts.
We also received a graph of underride deaths by State for 2015 from Matt Brumbelow at the IIHS. Specifically, these are “2015 Passenger vehicle occupant fatalities in 2-vehicle crashes with tractor-trailers.”
Matt asked me to explain further, “that 2015 is still the latest year of data that NHTSA has released. Also, that while not all these crashes will have involved underride, our estimates based on other studies is that underride occurs in 80-90% of tractor-trailer rear and side crashes with serious/fatal injuries.”
I hope that these visual and informative tools will aid us, as a nation, in addressing this tragic but preventable public health problem.