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NHTSA: Traffic fatalities up 5.6 percent in 2016

traffic on road
Photo: Illinois Tollway

Washington – A total of 37,461 people died in motor vehicle-related crashes in 2016 – a 5.6 percent increase and the second straight year fatalities have risen, according to Traffic Safety Facts, a publication of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Data, which was collected from every state and the District of Columbia, showed increases in vehicle miles traveled (2.2 percent), fatality rate per million vehicle miles traveled (2.6), drunk driving deaths (1.7), speeding-related deaths (4.0), deaths from not wearing a seat belt (4.6), motorcycle deaths (5.1), pedestrian deaths (9.0) and bicyclist deaths (1.3).

“The problem is clear, but so are the solutions,” Jackie Gillan, president of Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, said in an Oct. 6 press release. “Too many states lack too many safety laws, and that is contributing to this public health crisis. At the federal level, critical safety standards that would make our highways safer for everyone are delayed or ignored.”

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