Safety Driving

NSC sees ‘glimmer of hope’ in latest data on roadway deaths


Photo: Cavan Images/iStockphoto

Itasca, IL — The number of motor vehicle-related deaths dipped 3.4% in the first half of the year compared with the same period in 2022, according to the National Safety Council.

Preliminary estimates show that 21,150 people were killed on the nation’s roads over the first six months of the year – down from 21,870 in 2022.

“While there is a glimmer of hope that progress is being made, these estimates are still a stark reminder of the work that lies ahead,” said Mark Chung, executive vice president of roadway practice at NSC. “Every life lost on the road is a profound tragedy that leaves a lasting impact on families, friends and communities, and every single one of those deadly crashes was preventable.

“The estimates further underscore the urgent need for continued efforts to improve road safety across the nation through the implementation of the Safe System approach.”

To help ensure roadway safety, the council is urging drivers to:
Drive distraction-free. As National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data shows, around 3,000 people are killed in crashes involving a distracted driver each year. Put the phone away and #JustDrive.
Slow down and move over. Speeding is a factor in more than a quarter of all traffic fatalities. Don’t exceed the speed limit and be sure to move over for emergency vehicles with flashing lights.
Designate a sober driver or arrange an alternative mode of transportation. Alcohol is only one cause of impaired driving. Drugs – including opioids, cannabis and some over-the-counter medicines – can impair drivers by causing drowsiness, altering visual functions, and affecting mental judgment and motor skills. Don’t get behind the wheel if you’re in this state.
Buckle up. Since 1975, seat belts are estimated to have saved hundreds of thousands of lives. Buckle up and make sure you have the appropriate car seats installed correctly for children.
Check for open recalls. In the United States, more than 50 million vehicles have unrepaired safety recalls, and many of those recalls involve defective parts that can pose serious risks to occupants.

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