U.S. road safety laws are designed to protect Georgia residents and other Americans from traffic-related injuries and deaths. For example, laws on impaired driving and seat belt use have been proven to save lives. Unfortunately, not all countries have such laws, and their citizens are dying as a result.

According to a new report by the World Health Organization, 1.35 million people were killed in traffic accidents worldwide in 2016. That number, which represents an all-time high, makes car crashes the eighth leading cause of death for people of all ages, displacing HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. Car accidents are also now the top cause of death for children and adults between the ages of 5 and 29. The overall global traffic death rate has remained steady at 18 deaths per 100,000 people for the last 15 years.

The WHO report, entitled the 2018 Global Status Report on Road Safety, says that low-income countries suffer a disproportionate number of traffic-related deaths. While residents of low-income countries own just 1 percent of the world’s motor vehicles, they represent 13 percent of the world’s traffic deaths. In fact, Africa has the highest traffic-related death rate in the world, suffering 26.6 deaths per 100,000 people. In comparison, European drivers have a traffic death rate of just 9.6 deaths per 100,000. One of the top reasons for this discrepancy is the lack of strong road safety laws in low-income countries. Another reason is the lack of quality post-accident emergency care.

When negligent drivers cause motor vehicle accidents, they could be found legally liable for damages. With the help of an attorney, injured victims may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against a negligent driver in civil court. This might lead to a settlement that covers medical expenses, pain and suffering and more.