11 Statistics and Facts That’ll Stop You From Driving Uninsured

It is all too common for drivers to get behind the wheel uninsured. In fact, stats show that by April 2010, 13.5 percent of all drivers in the U.S. were without car insurance.

If you have thought about getting behind the wheel without coverage, it’s definitely an idea you should reconsider. Don’t have a good reason to do so? Well check out these stats and facts on why you shouldn’t be driving uninsured.

#1: There Were 5,811,000 Car Accidents In 2008

The latest stats from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics show there were 5,811,000 car accidents in 2008. As you know, any car accident that is not covered by car insurance is one that has to be paid for out of pocket, so why take the chance of driving uninsured?

#2: You Have a 30 Percent Chance of Being in a Serious Car Crash

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that the average American has a 30 percent chance of being involved in a serious automobile accident in their lifetime. Do you want to take that chance on a crash without collision insurance to pay for your car?

#3: The Average Cost of Injury In a Car Accident Is $61,600

According to the National Safety Council, the average cost of injury in a car accident is $61,600. If you carry the proper liability insurance, this cost is covered by your company if you’re at fault in the accident.

Your liability coverage can also cover the average cost of a property damage crash too, which is $7,500.

#4: Reports Show 147 Million Americans Admit to Driving Drunk

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are 147 million self-reported episodes of alcohol-impaired driving each year. With 30 percent of accidents and crashes during the week and 50 percent on weekends occurring due to drinking and driving, do you want to be on the road without financial protection when these drivers reach your intersection?

#5: Vehicle Loss Due to Natural Disasters Is Increasing

The Insurance Services Office’s Property Claim Services (PCS) unit found that the number of reported auto insurance claims for vehicle loss from natural disasters was 982,350 in 2005, which represented a sharp increase from the 485,150 claims in 2001.

These disasters could occur while driving or with your car parked in the garage. Either way, you’ll need comprehensive insurance to avoid paying for the damage yourself.

#6: Teens Are On the Road—And They’re Dangerous

According to the CDC, while young people ages 15-24 only represent 14 percent of the U.S. population, , the risk of vehicle crashes is higher among this group, especially 16- to 19-year olds, than any other age group.

In fact, this group is four times more likely to crash a car than an older driver. Do you want to be uninsured on the road with this knowledge?

#7: Wisconsin Became the 49th State to Require Liability Coverage

In June 2010, Wisconsin became the 49th state to mandate auto insurance. This means, New Hampshire is the only state that doesn’t require its drivers to carry coverage behind the wheel. Those in other states driving without coverage could face penalties.

#8: The Penalty for Driving Uninsured Can Be Steep

Depending on the state you live in, the penalty for driving without insurance can result in a violation ranging from $100 (Delaware) to $5,000 or up to one year in jail (Massachusetts). Do you want to face the penalty?

#9: Your Car Might Be More Likely to Get Stolen

Any car is capable of being stolen, but if you drive a Cadillac Escalade, Chevy Silverado, Dodge Charger or others among the top 10 most stolen cars, according to the Highway Loss Data Institute, you could find yourself up a creek without a paddle.

It’s good to keep this in mind when getting behind the wheel. Even better, keep in mind that if you carry comprehensive insurance, your insurance company will pay to replace the vehicle.

#10: Thieves Like Car Parts Too

Comprehensive coverage doesn’t just cover stolen cars, it covers parts too. This is good to remember since Geico released a report recently that revealed an increase in catalytic converter theft due to their high value and ease in stealing.

People have had their parts stolen at malls, shopping centers and even business parking lots, so if you park your car anywhere outside of your garage, consider getting coverage to ensure you won’t have to pay out of pocket to replace your stolen parts.

#11: There are Tons of Discounts Available to Lower Coverage Costs

What’s most important to remember is that you don’t have to drive around without car insurance. There are tons of auto insurance discounts to take advantage of that can lower your costs. Also, you could consider pay-as-you-drive options to soften the blow of an insurance premium.

There’s no excuse for driving without coverage, especially when you see the consequences of going without. So take time to shop around for insurance options that could help you avoid paying tons of money after an accident or to the police department because you chose not to carry coverage.

Stacey Bumpus started writing as a youngster, creating little fun newsletters to distribute to her elementary school friends. But it wasn’t until she completed her bachelors and masters degrees in communication that she realized her fun pastime could become a career.

After spending years in corporate communications, she discovered that freelancing was her cup of tea and fell in love with finding the latest financial news. Now, providing news and tips about taxes, mortgages, banking and even logging her efforts to save toward retirement, she’s not only fulfilling her childhood passion, but also helping others manage their finances responsibly.