Arizona's Rural Roads Some of the Nation's Most Deadly
The buckling of U.S. Route 89 outside of Page last year actually resulted in no injuries.
The fatality rate on Arizona's rural roads is among the highest in the nation.
According to the Road Information Program (TRIP), Arizona's fatality rate for drivers on rural roads is the nation's seventh highest, and more than double the fatality rate on all other roads.
The fatality rates are calculated by every 100 million miles of travel on these roads.
"Inadequate or a lack of desirable roadway safety features, longer emergency vehicle response times and the higher speeds traveled on rural roads compared to urban roads are factors in the higher traffic fatality rate found on rural, non-Interstate routes," the report states.
In addition to that, TRIP listed the top 20 states with the most rural roads in poor condition, and the top 20 states with the most deficient bridges in rural areas. Arizona is not on either of those lists.
It's hard to pin down exact causes for Arizona's high rate, because there are so many factors. For example, where there are major new oil and gas fields, large trucks will be frequently traveling on roads not designed for that kind of travel. Consider oil extraction in Texas and North Dakota, and natural gas extraction in a state like Pennsylvania -- all states with some of the most deadly rural roads.
Arizona's fatality rate on all types of roadways is also in the top half of the 50 states.
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