Two NC cities saw fewer crashes in 2019 — but still rank among least safe for drivers

Two North Carolina cities are among the least safe for drivers in the United States, a new study finds.

Charlotte and Raleigh had some of the highest car accident totals of all cities in 2019, according to the nonprofit Go Safe Labs.

The Queen City was the second-most dangerous city for drivers, with 21,818 crashes, the findings released last week show. Not far behind was Raleigh, which ranked No. 6 and had 12,846 crashes.

The two cities had fewer crashes than in 2018, according to Go Safe Labs. Charlotte saw a 13.3 percent decrease, and Raleigh’s was 25.5 percent lower, the study says.

The group says it evaluated cities based on data from more than 1.8 million accident reports from January 2018 to December 2019.

The study’s rankings included some of the country’s 10 largest cities by population, including Houston, Los Angeles, Dallas and Phoenix. Among all North Carolina cities, Charlotte and Raleigh have the most residents.

The results seem to contradict other recent studies.

Last month, WalletHub named North Carolina the third-best state for drivers, The Charlotte Observer reported. And in September, the same website ranked Raleigh and Charlotte among the most driver-friendly cities in the United States.

While those studies evaluated safety, they also examined average gas prices, insurance costs, commute times and other factors that contribute to the experience behind the wheel, The Observer reported.

Go Safe Labs focuses solely on accident totals and so-called “hotspots,” intersections with the highest crash volumes, according to results.

Three of those places were in neighboring South Carolina, on roadways in Columbia and Greenville, findings show. But none of the cities with hotspots made it to the list of the most dangerous locations for driving.

Overall, Houston was named the worst city for driver safety with 22,188 crashes, according to Go Safe Labs. And nationwide, accidents increased 6.8 percent from 2018 to 2019, results show.

The Charlotte Observer