Top 6 Most Dangerous Roads in Charleston: You Should Know

Last Updated on February 5, 2024 by John Robinson

Charleston is one of the most dangerous places to drive in the US. As a matter of fact, a study published on ABC News showed that South Carolina’s largest city ranks 5th in the list of America’s most dangerous cities to drive in [1].

Remember, Charleston boasts of having a wide variety of roads, ranging from eight-lane to two-lane and unpaved roads. One can only assume that the numbers of recorded accidents per day, from head-ons to side-impact collisions, rollovers, and pedestrian hits, are as many as the roads.

Of course, some of these roads are more dangerous than others when it comes to safety while driving. If you are planning to visit Charleston anytime soon, whether for business or leisure, it is crucial to know the most dangerous roads in Charleston to avoid or take extra caution when driving if you must use them.

6 Of Most Dangerous Roads In Charleston

1. Interstate 26

Driving on a highway can cause terror and fear, especially for those drivers with little experience. 

Interstate 26 runs from Charleston to Landrum. Driving on Charleston roads always poses a great risk to even the seasoned motorist. It’s one of the riskiest roads in South Carolina.

The I-26 saw some of the highest fatalities between the years 2015 and 2017. The main reason for these accidents mostly is because it has few guardrails along the way. This makes it easier for cars to crash with each other when they move off the road.

If caught up in a car accident, it is vital to contact a car accident attorney as soon as possible to represent you as you pursue justice and compensation. As the team at David Aylor’s law offices on this page would advise, hiring an experienced legal counsel will ease the stressful aftermath. The attorney will hold your hand in the entire process and ensure the responsible party compensates you fully.

2. US 17 Coastal Highway Route 

There is no better feeling than sitting behind the wheel cruising in your own machine. Unfortunately, that feel-good moment hardly lasts before you come across an accident at the coastal highway. The coastal highway was built around the 1930s. Its narrow lanes and tight turns earned it the nickname ”killer 17”.

The Coastal Highway runs through the Santa Cruz Mountains and winds its way through Scottville. One of the reasons it’s Charleston’s most dangerous road is that it presents drivers with myriads of danger.

The road has a range of sharp curves, blind spots, narrow shoulders, sharp turns, and slick highways after rain or snowfall. This makes it difficult for the drivers to get around with the unforeseen sharp turns. No wonder numerous accidents are recorded here annually.

3. Interstate 95 

Driving should be enjoyable. It should not instill fear and worry. This can only result in an accident. While driving on some of the roads in Charleston you can’t help but feel jittery – and if your guess is as good as anyone’s one among such roads is Interstate 95, which has lately recorded an overwhelming number of fatalities and injuries!

Running through Walterboro in South Carolina and Florence, the interstate 95 records an alarming high of 730 deaths per mile of highway. Most accidents on this road involve multiple vehicles colliding, mostly due to high speeds. This is what kills or injures most passengers and drivers.

Other accidents are caused by fatigued driving, drunkenness, distracted driving, hit and run, overturned vehicles, crashes, hitting of roadside trees, and so forth.

4. Highway 22 

If you are one of those careful drivers and you happen to drive along Highway 22, then you need to be a worried folk and pay careful attention and observe alertness every second. Highway 22 was named one of the deadliest rural roads [2] by the S Carolina department of transportation in 2017.

It’s one of the most advanced roads in Charleston but also one of the deadliest. It records some of the highest fatality rates. It once recorded nine people in four years not considering the minor accidents which lead to broken limbs and disabilities.

Highway 22 is in a rural area which makes it even more dangerous since most motorists take advantage of this to exceed the speed limit. This makes most drivers lose self-control in case an animal jumps suddenly in front of the car. And this is what causes most deaths since you can hardly break.

5. Interstate 20

With busy roads and all calibers of drivers, accidents are bound to happen. Certain roads like interstate 20 have recorded an increase in the number of fatal accidents recently [3]. This has ranked it among the deadliest roads in Charleston. While driving on this highway, your chances of getting into an accident are always high.

Interstate 20 runs from Texas to Florence. It connects major cities like Dallas Fort Worth, Louisiana, Jackson, and others. As a simple Google search might reveal, the statistics of fatal car accidents on SC Interstate 20 are also nothing short of alarming. 

One of the reasons why it has been ranked among the most threatening roads is that at least one person is killed every two miles. This essentially translates to an average of 569 deaths per mile, which is quite a staggering figure. Images of overturned vehicles and hit pedestrians on the roadside of Interstate 20 are quite common.

6. Interstate 85

Interstate 85, which runs through Upstate South Carolina northeast-southwest, is not one of those roads that give you an easy ride. If you’re a regular user of this road, you will often come across car wrecks and other kinds of accidents. Most of these are majorly from run-ins with trees, overturned vehicles crash while traffic is moving, and so forth.

This is not to mention that in 2018 alone, there were over 3,500 auto accidents on South Carolina’s I-85. In a 2021 incident on this road, three people are said to have lost their lives in an accident that involved 8 vehicles according to troopers [4]. The scene of the accident is apparently called “death traps” according to Dennis Fowler, Cherokee county coroner.

With this kind of road, you need to stay vigilant and remain alert to your surroundings while on the road. Avoid over speeding. In the event, anyone or anything jumps in front of your car unawares, you will have enough time to brake and stop unlike if you were on a high speed.

Lately, most roads around the globe have become unforgiving and hostile due to reckless drivers who have flooded the roads. It’s always advisable that as a motorist, you act responsibly while on the road to ensure you keep yourself safe as well as other motorists around you, especially on dangerous roads.

Practicing good driving habits is no rocket science. It can go a long way in curbing road accidents and incidents. As a motorist it does not cost you a dime to observe the traffic lights, the lanes, the signs, turns and of course a bit of patience while on the road. This will keep our roads safe and sound, and help us navigate our dangerous roads safely.






John Robinson
John Robinson

Howdy! I’m John Robinson from Levittown, New York. I am a mechanical engineer for 15 years and already had an established car repair company. I developed a personal relationship with cars since I was a kid. I always love the sounds and smell emitted by a car or truck and even at construction machinery. Since then I have been married but my love for cars only grew.