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Interstate 285 is the nation's deadliest road

In an average year, auto accidents are the cause of more than 30,000 deaths. In addition, more than 2 million people are injured or disabled in traffic wrecks. According to the Association for Safe International Road Travel, these incidents cost our national economy more than $200 billion in lost work hours and medical expenses.

Unfortunately, Georgia owns the distinction of being home to the nation's deadliest road. Specifically, a report conducted by Vox shows that in some years Interstate 285, which rings around Atlanta, has the highest number of fatal-accidents-per-mile. Likewise, Georgia itself frequently figures among the top-10 worst states for deadly accidents.

The frequency of fatalities

The Vox study analyzed nearly 3,000 accidents that took place across 315 U.S. interstates. To calculate the death rate, the researchers simply divided the number of fatalities by the length (in miles) of the highway. Because I-285 is rather short in distance - it stretches for just under 75 miles - and services a major metropolis, it was bound to perform poorly by the metrics used.

Nevertheless, with 3.5 deaths taking place for every 10 miles of road, I-285 is objectively dangerous. And drivers are no strangers to the risks of driving on it. The highway usually spans between eight and 12 lanes, and widens to 18 lanes near Spaghetti Junction. It is a heavily used trucking route, making it a prime site for a spate of serious truck collisions (and explosions).

How to avoid mishaps

Accidents are unpredictable. But drivers can take care to protect themselves. The rules are standard and simple: Don't text and drive; don't drink and drive; don't speed; wear a seatbelt.

When a calamity occurs, it is important to seek both medical and legal help. Immediate medical attention is necessary to make sure any injuries are properly treated. A lawyer, meanwhile, can help make sure you recover compensation to pay for your hospital bills and any costs associated with ongoing care.

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