Colorado has some winding mountain roads, busy urban surface streets and also plenty of highways that play host to a significant number of crashes each year. Collisions can occur just about anywhere, from the most rural locations to busy streets frequented by commuters every single day.
The weather and the behavior of the drivers whom you encounter on the road are factors that influence your likelihood of getting into a crash. The time of day that you drive and the route that you choose could also affect your safety.
When looking at fatal crash statistics from across Colorado, a pattern starts to emerge regarding where some of the worst collisions occur. What streets are home to the highest number of deadly collisions in recent years in Colorado?
The deadliest roads all have higher speed limits
When looking at the top ten deadliest roads in the state, certain patterns appear. For example, all of the roads on the list have higher speed limits and are routed through areas with high population density. The deadliest road in the state, based on crashes that occurred between 2018 and 2020, was W. Colfax Avenue between Ingalls Street and N. Broadway in Denver. This stretch of road is only 4.1 miles long, but it played host to 18 fatalities as a result of 17 crashes in just three years.
The second deadliest road, with 15 deaths, was N. Academy Boulevard from Austin Bluffs Parkway to E. Platte Avenue in Colorado Springs. S. Academy Boulevard between Airport Road and Ronald Reagan Highway rounds out the top three with 12 fatalities during the three years reviewed.
Iliff Avenue in Aurora, I-25 in Colorado Springs, E. Colfax Avenue in Aurora, S. Wadsworth Boulevard in Lakewood, I-70 in Denver, I-225 in Aurora and CanAm Highway in Fort Lupton also all served as the sites of seven or more deaths between 2018 and 2020, leading to their inclusion on the list.
Why crashes occur more frequently in some locations
Certain sections of road create more risk than others. Factors including traffic density, visibility, road design, speed limit and local amenities can all influence the likelihood of a collision at a specific location. Drivers who understand that certain roads are more dangerous than others can avoid those streets or adjust their driving habits to better honor their higher degree of crash risk.