Although unvaccinated people made up only 16 percent of the study’s participants, they were involved in 25 percent of the traffic crashes during this time period, making them 72 percent more likely to be involved in crashes compared to vaccinated people.
The study divided the participants into multiple subgroups, determining the accident risk for the vaccinated versus unvaccinated in each subset. Across almost every demographic, the unvaccinated were more likely to get into car crashes. The one exception was adults 65 years of age and older, also known as senior drivers. But even after adjusting for home location, sex, age, socioeconomic status, and people who have certain medical diagnoses such as sleep apnea, which make crashes more likely, the unvaccinated were still 48 percent more likely to be involved in car crashes compared to the vaccinated.
||Risk with vaccine per million
||Risk with no vaccine per million
||Risk of a car crash for unvaccinated vs. vaccinated people
|65 and older
|Higher socioeconomic status
|Middle socioeconomic status
|Lower socioeconomic status
|No sleep apnea
|No COVID infection
In general, the study also noted that other certain groups were more likely to get into crashes, such as:
- Younger adults. Younger adults have less driving experience on average, which is the reason the cost of auto insurance for teens is so high.
- Men. Men pay more for car insurance due to their greater propensity toward at-fault car accidents.
- People with lower socioeconomic status. The study saw the greatest divide between unvaccinated versus vaccinated people when looking at lower socioeconomic statuses.
- People that misuse alcohol. Alcohol misuse is a substantial risk factor for traffic collisions, as people who misuse alcohol may drive under the influence (DUI).
- People with sleep apnea and/or depression. Sleep apnea and depression are modest risk factors when it comes to traffic collisions.
However, people with diseases like sleep apnea and diabetes aren’t the cause of most traffic crashes. Rather, human behaviors like the ones listed below are more likely to cause accidents.
- Disobeying a traffic signal
- Failing to yield to a right-of-way
- Improper passing