Exploring the 8 Deadliest Roads in California

Exploring the 8 Deadliest Roads in California

Driving through the deep gorges to the beautiful roads of the coastline, through the densely populated areas to the abominable gauntlet taking you to Sin City. There are several roads, which need extra caution while driving through the Golden State.

A report from the NHTSA fatality analysis reporting system reveals that some Californian highways are amongst the 50 most unsafe roads for accidents in the United States of America. The article lists the top 8 of these deadliest roads in California.

Deadliest Roads in California

1. SR-62 - Barren and Dangerous

Covering more than 151 miles, SR-62 starts from the northwest of Palm Spring and stretches to the border of Arizona. In the stretch, it crosses the northern edge of the state park of Joshua Tree.

A signboard on the east of the city of Twentynine Palm gives the warning of no services for the next 100 miles. The officials say that due to lack of road center divisions, the drivers turn the vehicle across the upcoming traffic at uncertain points leading to accidents.

Since it comes in the east-west direction, the sun hits the driver's eyes directly during sunrise, and the sunsets. It is a contributing component to the number of car accidents at SR-62. The Palm Springs weather conditions also play a decisive role in driving safety. Always make sure to check the weather conditions before you plan long drives especially through such dangerous roads.

Make sure to have enough fuel in the car, and carry your sunglasses.

2. SR-2 - Attractive, But Very Deceitful

In the span of around 87 miles, it climbs to the west through the mountains of San Gabriel of La Canada Flintridge. SR-2 is called Angeles Crest Scenic Byway in San Bernardino County’s eastern area. The road mounts to 6,400 feet and ends at 7,901 feet, crossing Dawson’s Saddle.

The accident averages 1.6 miles, majorly in the eastern part of the state route. The road is full of deceitful blind curves and treacherous sharp ascents and descents. In mere seven years, the number of fatalities has risen to 50.

When you compare the number of accidents to 1-5 masses, the figures will not bother you much and will not take the road seriously while driving, but comparing the number of fatalities with the traffic volume, will make you realize how dangerous SR-2 is.

The scenes along the road are breathtaking and risky at the same time. Driving to SR-2 needs your utmost attentiveness.

3. I-8 - Precipitous Opening for the Southwest

I-8 runs from San Diego to Casa Grande via the Colorado River, close to Yuma. The highway is also called “Border Friendship Route”. The In-Ko-Pah Gorge and Devil Canyon on the east of San Diego is famous for extreme winds. The storm surges to 100 mph and causes traffic shutdown very often.

There is an Interior Border Checkpoint near Alpine where most of the accidents take place. The smugglers drive at a very high speed to evade the checkpoint, which results in fatal car accidents. Total numbers of 134 fatalities have been reported in seven years on the stretch of 171 miles of the Californian side. On I-8, the average fatality is at every 1.2 miles.

Check the road conditions twice before setting out for I-8, and no need to be reminded again that caution is the key to a safe journey on roads alongside mountains and valleys.

4. SR-78 - Mountain Route

By the side of the ocean to the Blythe, the SR-78 stretches to the extent of 215 miles. Passing through the densely populated region of the northern county of San Diego, it goes through Witch Creek and Julian before advancing into the Mountains of Cuyamaca. The mountainous sections in the area make Banner Hill an infamous place of distress. 62 casualties in 7 years bring an average of more than one casualty in every 3 miles.

Before heading towards SR-78, check whether all the safety features of the car are in good shape.

5. I-40 - Threat to Travelers

The California portion of I-40 is also known as Needle Freeway. It stretches from Barstow to Needles, passing across the Mojave Desert. The name Needle comes from a small town situated on the bank of River Colorado. The infamous history of I-40 includes the detonation of 22 nuclear blasts to cut a direct pathway through the Bristol Mountains in the 1960s.

The car accident continues in the same flow even after a regular check-up on the road. The road becomes slick in rains and hot weather conditions, but the traffic on this route remains the same throughout, thus, becoming one of the causes of fatal road accidents.

6. I-5 - The Dangerous Corridors

The 796 miles from Mexico stretching to Oregon is one of the deadliest roads of the state. The fatalities occurred at nearly every mile of I-5, adding it to the unfortunate category. There have been over 700 mortalities in total in the last seven years. The most unsafe section lies in Los Angeles County because of the traffic density.

Do not drive on I-5 when under stress or when feeling tired. Travel with caution on this route and avoid peak hours.

7. SR-86 - Notorious Passage

Starting from the Mexican border to Calexico, it spans 90 miles. SR-86 crosses the Imperial Valley on the west of the Salton Sea before heading north to Indio. A two-lane highway provides easy access to rural roads turning into a cause of many fatal road accidents and earning the name of being a road of uncertainties.

Recently it has been upgraded to a four-lane highway, but the condition remains the same. The flow of fatal accidents has not stopped. The traffic of semi-trucks and heavy loaders contributes to the endangered safety of travelers.

8. I-15 - Access to Sin City

Over eight million people travel across a 181-mile highway from Las Vegas, crossing San Bernardino County. The road is straight with little terrain, and perhaps, is the primary reason for fatal road accidents. The straight highway road lures the drivers to raise the speed, and any distraction can result in a mishap.

Improvements in the road have decreased the accidents to some extent, but 1069 fatalities over 15 years in 834 car accidents marks it as one of the most dangerous roads of California.

Ensure Safety While Driving

The geographical restraints are the barriers to making roads safer for travelers. Potholes, lack of guardrails, poor signage indicating the warnings, etc., are reasons for many accidents.

Drink and drive are one of the top-most reasons for road accidents all across the world. You should check your vehicle thoroughly before setting out on the highways of California.

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