One-Vehicle Crash Kills One in Winona, Mississippi

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WINONA, MS- The reports that a Winona local, 25-year-old Davarius J. Purnell, died from injuries that he suffered in a single-vehicle crash on Thursday, April 19, 2018. Purnell had been taken to the University of Mississippi Medical Center for treatment.

Single-car crashes occur when one vehicle flipped or collides with an object like a tree. These accidents can occur for a number of reasons, such as bad weather, potholes, a driver swerving to avoid an object or a health emergency, such as a driver experiencing a heart attack. One of the most common causes of single-vehicle accidents is distracted driving.

In 2015, the total number of people killed in the United States in accidents caused by distracted driving was 3,477. Texting and driving has been shown to be extremely dangerous. On average, a driver who checks his or her phone to read or send a quick text will not be looking at the road for about 4.6 seconds. While that might not sound long, in a vehicle traveling 55 miles per hour, that 4.6 seconds means driving the length of a football field. Mississippi officially outlawed texting and driving for all drivers in 2015.

Of course, while texting and driving is becoming a well-known risk to people on the road, drinking and driving has been a concern for many years. In fact, New York became the first state to outlaw the practice in 1910. Over a century later, driving under the influence of alcohol is still a problem. Drunk driving was the cause of about 18% of total traffic deaths in Mississippi in 2015.

Another problem specific to Mississippi is a lower than average use of safety belts. While the national average for seat belt use is 90.1%, only 77.9% of Mississippians are buckling up. This means that Mississippi has one of the lowest rates of seat belt use in the whole country, with about half of motor vehicle occupants killed being unrestrained.

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