Traffic Accidents in Phoenix – How Do We Rank?

Phoenix motorists seem to have a reputation for aggressive, high speed driving.  A day hardly goes by without a traffic accident on a Phoenix highway. But, is Phoenix, Arizona really as bad as it seems?  How do we rank in comparison to other major cities in the country?

Recently, Allstate Insurance researchers analyzed internal data to determine the likelihood that drivers would be involved in a vehicle collision. They looked at those cities in the U.S. with at least 100,000 in population–the largest 196 cities. To create the report entitled, “Allstate America’s Best Drivers Report,” they took property damage claims over a two-year period (from January, 2002 to December, 2003) and used a weighted average of the two-year numbers to determine the annual percentages. The report defines an auto crash as any collision resulting in property damage.

Nationally, the average driver can expect to experience an auto crash with property damage once in every ten years. In Cedar Rapids, though, the average is only once in every 15 years, making that city the safest of all cities of more than 100,000 population.

Here are the top 10, nationally:

1. Cedar Rapids, Iowa
2. Sioux Falls, South Dakota
3. Chattanooga, Tennessee
4. Huntsville, Alabama
5. Knoxville, Tennessee
6. Des Moines, Iowa
7. Topeka, Kansas
8. Lakewood, Colorado
9. Fort Collins, Colorado
10. Birmingham, Alabama

Clearly, those of us who live in bigger cities face bigger risks. In the category of big cities–those with a million or more people–Phoenix, Arizona was the top ranked city in the country, mirroring the national average of a collision once every ten years.

Here are the top 10 cities over 1 million in population:

(the number represents the national ranking)

64. Phoenix
111. San Diego
121. Houston
167. San Antonio
169. New York City
173. Chicago
177. Los Angeles
180. Dallas
182. Philadelphia

Tucson, Arizona also did very well, ranked 53rd overall in the study, and 6th among cities with populations between 500,000 and one million residents. The average driver in Tucson has an accident once in very 10.3 years.