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The Deadliest Counties in the United States for Traffic Fatalities

One person in the U.S. is killed in a car accident every 12 minutes. With roughly forty thousand deaths caused every year by traffic accidents, which areas of the country have seen higher rates of fatal car accidents than others? The Convoy Car Shipping team sought out the U.S. counties with the highest rate of traffic fatalities between 2017 and 2022 using data from the Fatalities Analysis Reporting System (FARS). The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) created FARS as a nationwide census to provide Congress and the American public with detailed reports of every fatal car accident on U.S. roads and highways since 1975. According to the FARS database, speeding is the leading cause of fatal car accidents, accounting for nearly one-third of all deadly auto accidents.

In addition to the counties with the most fatal car accidents per capita, our team also used the data to find the major U.S. highway or Interstate road in each county where the most fatalities took place during this five-year period. Explore the map below to see which eighty counties, big and small, were deemed to be the deadliest for traffic fatalities, along with some of the deadliest highways in the U.S. where a majority of the fatalities occurred.

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What Are the Deadliest Counties for Traffic Fatalities?

Out of all the U.S. counties, one stands out as being the deadliest county for traffic fatalities on a per capita basis. Loving County is the least populous county in the U.S. with a population of just 51 people, but the 15 car accident deaths that have occurred in Loving County between 2017 and 2021 puts the rate of traffic fatalities per capita at an all-time high of 2,941 per 10,000 people. Almost half of the traffic fatalities in Loving County during this time took place on County Road 300.

Which large county has the highest rate of traffic fatalities? Volusia County, Florida has the most traffic fatalities per capita for the largest counties in America with over half a million residents. The county, which is home to Daytona Beach, had a rate of 11.19 traffic fatalities per 10,000 people. Between 2017 and 2022 648 people died in motor vehicle accidents in Volusia County, with 82 of the auto accident deaths having taken place on U.S. Highway 1.

Which County Has the Most Traffic Fatalities?

The U.S. county with the most auto deaths is Los Angeles County in southern California. The county had the most car deaths per year during each of the five years included in the study, which amounted to a total of 3,773 fatalities from car accidents. The county’s seat is Los Angeles, the second largest city in the U.S., and notorious for having some of the most congested traffic in the country with drivers said to lose 86 hours per year from sitting in rush hour traffic. Even with such a large number of traffic fatalities, Los Angeles County’s large population of almost 10 million people gives the county a low rate of traffic fatalities at just 3.88 fatalities per 10,000 people. The deadliest highway in Los Angeles County is Interstate 5 with 134 fatalities over the five-year period.

How Many People Are Killed in Traffic Accidents Each Year?

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the number of traffic fatalities in the United States each year ranges between 35,000 and 45,000 fatalities. The NHTSA reported 42,939 fatalities from car accidents in 2021, reaching the highest number of motor vehicle traffic fatalities in fourteen years. The number of auto fatalities in 2021 was a 10.5% increase from the 38,824 traffic fatalities that occurred in 2020. The NHTSA states that speeding is a factor in almost one-third of all traffic fatalities and has launched a “Speeding Wrecks Lives” prevention campaign to try and lower the number of fatal car accidents.

Do you need to get a car across the country but you’re not sure how to get it there? That’s where we come in! We can ship your automobile across the country, from state to state, or even just door to door; with the option to expedite the process to get your vehicle there even faster. Our nationwide car shipping will save you the headache of getting stuck in traffic for hours, not to mention allowing you to avoid driving through some of the deadliest counties and roads in America. Learn how to ship a car and all of the popular and special services we offer for both individuals and businesses.

We’ll leave you with this simple quote to abide by to stay safe while driving on the road, “Leave sooner, drive slower, live longer.”

The Deadliest Counties in the U.S. for Traffic Fatalities (Population: 500,000+)

 County PopulationTotal Number of Traffic Fatalities Between 2017-2021Rate of Traffic Fatalities per 10,000 PeopleDeadliest Road in CountyNumber of Traffic Fatalities on Deadliest Road Between 2017-2021
1Volusia County, FL579,19264811.19US-182
2Shelby County, TN916,37193410.19SR-17554
3Kern County, CA916,1089109.93I-572
4Polk County, FL787,4046758.57US-27 & SR-6070
5Pasco County, FL608,7945158.46US-19112
6Duval County, FL1,016,5368308.16US-9091
7San Bernardino County, CA2,193,65617598.02I-15204
8Bernalillo County, NM672,5085388.00I-4064
9Stanislaus County, CA551,2754337.85SR-9947
10Fresno County, CA1,015,1907957.83SR-18055
11San Joaquin County, CA793,2296057.63I-576
12Jackson County, MO716,5315307.40I-43541
13Greenville County, SC547,9503997.28US-2565
14Jefferson County665,4094787.18I-5964
15Davidson County, TN708,1445047.12I-2454
16Hillsborough County, FL1,513,30110697.06US-41101
17Brevard County, FL630,6934356.90US-196
18Jefferson County, KY773,3995286.83US-31 (E & W)78
19DeKalb County, GA762,8205186.79I-28568
20Pima County, AZ1,057,5977066.68I-1056


The Deadliest Counties in the U.S. for Traffic Fatalities (Population: 150,000-499,999)

 County PopulationTotal Number of Traffic Fatalities Between 2017-2021Rate of Traffic Fatalities per 10,000 PeopleDeadliest Road in CountyNumber of Traffic Fatalities on Deadliest Road Between 2017-2021
1Ector County, TX160,86925715.98I-2042
2Hinds County, MS217,73026512.17I-5532
3Mohave County, AZ220,81626712.09US-9344
4Midland County, TX171,99920411.86I-2048
5Marion County, FL396,41546211.65SR-4046
6Bibb County, GA156,19718211.65I-7526
7St. Louis city, MO286,57832111.20I-7030
8Yavapai County, AZ246,19127211.05I-1747
9Smith County, TX241,92226510.95I-2023
10Anderson County, SC209,58122810.88I-8524
11Madera County, CA160,25616810.48SR-4120
12Butte County, CA207,30321210.23SR-9936
13Citrus County, FL162,52916510.15US-1933
14Alachua County, FL284,0302839.96US-44135
15Merced County, CA290,0142889.93SR-15244
16Imperial County, CA178,7131779.90I-853
17Shasta County, CA180,9301769.73SR-29927
18Calcasieu Parish, LA202,4181969.68I-1038
19Spartanburg County, SC345,8313349.66US-22136
20Escambia County, FL324,8783139.63US-9052


The Deadliest Counties in the U.S. for Traffic Fatalities (Population: 20,000-149,999)

County PopulationTotal Number of Traffic Fatalities Between 2017-2021Rate of Traffic Fatalities per 10,000 PeopleDeadliest Road in CountyNumber of Traffic Fatalities on Deadliest Road Between 2017-2021
1Fairfield County, SC20,4556230.31SR-3411
2Fayette County, TX24,9137530.10US-7718
3Colleton County, SC38,59911329.28I-9529
4Cibola County, NM26,9507628.20I-4044
5Panola County, TX22,6776126.90US-7918
6Marshall County, MS34,1108825.80I-2212
7Jasper County, SC32,0397924.66I-9518
8Milam County, TX25,6286324.58US-7919
9Apache County, AZ65,43215523.69US-19129
10Scott County, MS27,7076523.46I-2015
11Orangeburg County, SC83,09419423.35I-2628
12Colorado County, TX20,7544823.13I-1023
13Seminole County, OK23,3515322.70US-37715
14Hardee County, FL25,6455822.62US-1717
15Robeson County, NC116,66326322.54I-9528
16Hickman County, TN25,4555722.39I-4021
17Franklin County, GA24,1285422.38I-8528
18McCurtain County, OK30,9316922.31US-25920
19Panola County, MS32,6617222.04I-5519
20Clarendon County, SC30,9136822.00I-9527


The Deadliest Counties in the U.S. for Traffic Fatalities (Population: 0-19,999)

County PopulationTotal Number of Traffic Fatalities Between 2017-2021Rate of Traffic Fatalities per 10,000 PeopleDeadliest Road in CountyNumber of Traffic Fatalities on Deadliest Road Between 2017-2021
1Loving County, TX51152,941.18CR-3007
2Kenedy County, TX35814391.06US-7714
3Esmeralda County, NV74418241.94US-612
4Glasscock County, TX1,16419163.23SR-1377
5Culberson County, TX2,15535162.41I-1015
6Borden County, TX5859153.85US-1806
7Hudspeth County, TX3,43248139.86I-1031
8Mineral County, CO93112128.89US-1608
9Terrell County, TX6938115.44US-907
10Oldham County, TX1,75220114.16I-4015
11Crockett County, TX2,9432998.54I-1019
12Guadalupe County, NM4,3103888.17I-4019
13Taliaferro County, GA1,6001487.50I-2010
14Wheeler County, OR1,4451283.04SR-194
15Martin County, TX5,2174280.51I-20 & SR-34912
16Jones County, SD884779.19I-906
17Jackson County, CO1,3021076.80SR-1255
18Cheyenne County, CO1,7321375.06US-4011
19Roberts County, TX803674.72SR-705
20Kimble County, TX4,4223170.10I-1022