Traffic deaths have decreased in almost all states: study

Ann Arbor, MI – Nationwide, traffic deaths fell by almost 23 percent between 2005 and 2012, according to a study from the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute.

The study analyzed state-by-state traffic data using the categories of fatalities per distance driven and fatalities per population. Data came from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Federal Highway Administration.

Only two states – Vermont and North Dakota – had a higher percentage of traffic deaths in 2012 than in 2005, according to the study. Meanwhile, 44 states and the District of Columbia recorded double-digit percentage declines in traffic deaths during that span.

The most significant declines in fatalities per population belonged to the District of Columbia (72.8 percent), Nevada (47.1 percent), Idaho (40.1 percent), Mississippi (38.8 percent) and Washington (37.4 percent). Rounding out the top 10 were California (37.3 percent), Florida (37.0 percent), Georgia (36.9 percent), Missouri (36.7 percent) and Arizona (36.5 percent).

Overall, researchers said, road safety was best in the District of Columbia and Massachusetts in terms of both fatality rate per distance driven and per population.