Want to reduce your odds of being killed in a car accident? It's not hard. Just stay in school.

The Study

At least, that's the lesson shown by one study, which found that people who graduated from college were less likely to be killed in motor vehicle accidents than those who dropped out of high school. These conclusions were drawn from a study that bridged 15 years: from 1995 to 2010. While many statistics have shown roads getting safer, this key demographic was actually in more danger.

4.3 Times

One key finding paints a clear picture: In 1995, those who possessed the lowest level of education were killed 2.4 times as often as those with the highest level of education. Fast forward to 2010, and they were killed 4.3 times as often.

Specifically, in 1995, those who did finish high school passed away at a rate of about three fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles. In 2010, that had fallen to 2.4. Those who went to college saw rates of less than one fatality per 100 million miles.

For high school dropouts, though, the figure was bleak. Their fatality rate in 1995 was nearly five deaths for each 100 million vehicle miles. When the 2010 statistics were examined, the number had jumped to 7.5 deaths.


The reasons for the gap perhaps require more study, but some have suggested economics play a role. Those without even a high school degree often get the lowest-paying jobs, meaning they also wind up with the oldest cars -- without the advantages of modern safety upgrades.

After an Accident

Have you lost a loved one in a car accident? If so, be sure you know what rights you may have to financial compensation for funeral costs, lost wages and more.