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Injury - Motor Vehicle Traffic Crash Deaths

Summary Indicator Report Data View Options

Motor Vehicle Traffic Crash Death Rates by County, New Mexico, 2016-2020

Motor Vehicle Traffic Crash Death Rates by Health Region, New Mexico, 2016-2020

Motor Vehicle Traffic Crash Death Rates by Urban and Rural Counties, New Mexico, 2016-2020

Motor Vehicle Traffic Crash Death Rates by U.S. States, 2020

Why Is This Important?

Motor vehicle traffic crash-related injuries were the second leading cause of injury death in 2020 for New Mexicans aged 1 to 24 years (11.4/100,000 population). Males between the ages of 15 to 24 years die from motor vehicle traffic crash-related injuries at a rate that is nearly twice the rate for females of the same age. Rural and mixed rural-urban counties have higher rates of motor vehicle traffic crash-related injury death. The increased risk in rural and mixed rural-urban counties may be due to a greater number of vehicle miles driven, limited policing of speed limits, increased prevalence of two-lane roads, and longer response times of paramedics and other emergency responders after an injurious motor vehicle crash has occurred. Distracted driving, speeding, fatigue, and drunk driving are important causes of motor vehicle traffic crash-related injury deaths.

Definition

The number of unintentional injury deaths due to motor vehicle traffic crashes per 100,000 population. Motor vehicle traffic crash deaths are unintentional deaths from motor vehicle crashes that occurred on a public roadway.

Data Sources

  • New Mexico Death Data: Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics (BVRHS), Epidemiology and Response Division, New Mexico Department of Health.
    (https://www.nmhealth.org/about/erd/bvrhs/vrp/)
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics, CDC WONDER Online Database
    (http://wonder.cdc.gov)
  • New Mexico Population Estimates: University of New Mexico, Geospatial and Population Studies (GPS) Program.
    (http://gps.unm.edu/)

How the Measure is Calculated

Numerator:The number of motor vehicle traffic crash-related unintentional injury deaths per year
Denominator:The mid-year estimated population.

How Are We Doing?

The motor vehicle traffic crash injury-related death rate in New Mexico decreased in 2015 from 2014, 15.1/100,000 and 17.6/100,000, respectively; however, the rate increased in 2016 to 19.0/100,000 population.

What Is Being Done?

During the last decade the Office of Injury Prevention has supported efforts to pass laws on the use of child safety seats and booster seats in motor vehicles. The NM Safety Belt Use Act of 2001 requires each occupant of a motor vehicle to have a safety belt properly fastened about his/her body while the vehicle is in motion. The New Mexico Child Restraint Act that was passed in 2005 requires children under the age of one to be in a rear-facing child safety seat and children under 5 and children under 40 pounds to be placed in a child safety seat or booster seat. The law also has motor vehicle restraint requirements for 5 to 12-year olds. The Legislature passed, and the Governor signed a bill into law in 2015, prohibiting texting while driving, and providing penalties for violations. A bill was introduced in the Legislature (but did not pass) in 2015, that would have required the use of a motorcycle safety helmet, while another was introduced that would have required the use of a safety helmet or payment of increased fees to permit motorcycle operators or passengers to refrain from wearing a safety helmet. The Child Fatality Review reviews the circumstances of all motor vehicle traffic crash injury-related deaths among children and youth under the age of 19 years to develop recommendations for prevention in the form of legislation and best practices. The Legislature passed, and the Governor signed a bill into law in 2015, prohibiting texting while driving, and providing penalties for violations. A bill was introduced in the Legislature (but did not pass) in 2015, that would have required the use of a motorcycle safety helmet, while another was introduced that would have required the use of a safety helmet or payment of increased fees to permit motorcycle operators or passengers to refrain from wearing a safety helmet.

Evidence-based Practices

"Use of child safety seats and safety belts and deterrence of alcohol-impaired driving are among the most important preventive measures to reduce motor vehicle-related injuries and deaths." [Source: Motor Vehicle-Related Injury Prevention, downloaded from The Community Guide website, http://www.thecommunityguide.org/mvoi/index.html, on 10/8/2013.] Recommended interventions for child safety seats include laws mandating their use, distribution of safety seats, community-wide education, enhanced enforcement, and incentive programs. Recommended interventions for seat belt use primary enforcement (versus secondary) laws mandating their use in conjunction with enhanced enforcement programs. Recommended interventions for alcohol-impaired driving include 0.08% blood alcohol concentration laws, lower blood-alcohol content laws for young or inexperienced drivers, minimum legal drinking age laws, publicized sobriety checkpoint programs, mass media campaigns, ignition interlocks, and school-based instructional programs. For more information on the recommended interventions see http://www.thecommunityguide.org

Indicator Data Last Updated On 05/16/2022, Published on 05/16/2022
Injury Epidemiology Unit, Epidemiology and Response Division, New Mexico Department of Health, 1190 S. Saint Francis Drive, Room N1105, P.O. Box 26110, Santa Fe, NM, 87502. Contact Garry Kelley, Senior Injury Epidemiologist, by telephone at (505) 827-0726 or email to Garry.Kelley@state.nm.us.