Desoto County News

Memphis drivers rank as the worst in the USA

When you drive into Memphis and immediately think you have a bunch of bad drivers around you on the interstate or elsewhere in the city, those thoughts now have some validity put to it. 

Consumer Affairs has come out with a new report rating major U.S. cities for their driving and Memphis came out on top as the city with the worst drivers in the country.  

Memphis is the city with the highest rate of fatal crashes caused by bad drivers, according to the report Worst Drivers in America.  

The U.S. Department of Transportation said that in the last recorded year (2021), bad drivers caused 203 fatal crashes in Memphis, almost twice that of Chicago and more than double that of New York.  About one percent of all fatal car crashes in the country that year occurred in Memphis.  

These figures were also reported, regarding fatal accidents in Memphis, according to the U.S. Transportation Department.  

  • Fatal crashes caused by bad driving per 100,000 population: 32.3
  • Total fatal crashes caused by bad driving: 203
  • Total car crash fatalities: 238
  • Total pedestrian fatalities: 55
  • Fatalities due to positive BAC per 100K population: 8.8
  • Percentage of fatal accidents linked to speeding: 20.1 percent

Following is the criteria used to rank U.S. cities above 100,000 in population for this study: 

Four crash factors were added together to create a “crash score.” 

  • Total car crash fatalities per 100,000 people
  • Number of fatal crashes due to bad driving per 100,000 people
  • Number of fatalities due to positive blood alcohol content per 100,000 people
  • Number of fatalities due to speeding per 100,000 people

Examples of “bad driving” included:

  • Aggressive driving
  • Careless driving
  • Driving the wrong way on a one-way traffic way
  • Failure to yield the right of way
  • Following improperly
  • Improper or erratic lane changing
  • Making an improper turn
  • Operating the vehicle in an erratic, reckless or negligent manner
  • Operator inexperience
  • Passing where prohibited

The top five cities as the worst, in order, were Memphis, Baton Rouge, La., Albuquerque, N.M., Macon, Ga., and St. Louis, Mo.  

You can read the entire report on the Consumer Affairs website.  

Bob Bakken

Bob Bakken is the most recognized and most trusted name in DeSoto County news and sports reporting, as readers continue to express their appreciation for his accuracy and fairness in the stories he writes. Bob is also heard on 95.3 The Rebel twice a week with sports updates and high school football play-by-play broadcasts in the fall. A former newspaper editor and writer, his award-winning background also includes television news producing, sports media relations, and radio broadcasting.

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