SILVER LAKE, LOS ANGELES (KABC) --A study done by the AAA Foundation revealed that more than 200,000 crashes resulted from debris on roadways across the nation over the last four years.
AAA's study said those crashes resulted in 39,000 injuries and more than 500 deaths between 2011 and 2014. In California alone, 45 crashes and 47 deaths were reported in the same time period.
Caltrans said the state spends more than $76 million just to collect debris off roadways. According to AAA, about two-thirds of debris-related crashes result from items falling off vehicles because drivers improperly secure the load.
Crashes involving debris on the roads were about four times more likely to occur on a freeway, which can make crashes more dangerous.
California Highway Patrol officers urge anyone who has an item drop on roadways, especially freeways, to call 911 and ask for assistance that way the item can be safely removed.
The department also wanted to remind drivers that they can be cited if their items and loads are unsecured.