Wednesday, May 15, 2013

All of the Sudden, Traffic Deaths in the United States Increased

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The latest National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) statistics was for the year 2011, where the traffic agency recorded a total of 32,367 fatalities from motor vehicle crashes in the United States. Said figure was the lowest number of fatalities since 1949, and was also a nearly 2-percent decline in the number of people killed from the previous year (32,999, 2010 statistics).

NHTSA Administrator David Strickland credited such decrease in the 2011 motor vehicle deaths to improved driving behavior, vehicle safety, and educational and awareness campaigns against drunk driving and for the importance of seat belt use. However, the traffic safety agency may have some explaining to do after early estimates of motor vehicle traffic deaths for 2012 showed alarming statistics.

Apparently, the number of traffic fatalities in the United States spiked from the 2011 total to a staggering 34,080, which is utterly surprising. This was a 5.3 percent increase compared to the previous year, and once the true statistics are finalized late this year or next year, the United States will see its first year-to-year increase in fatalities since 2005.

The increase was also seen in terms of seasons, geography, and the type of motor vehicle accident involved. To begin with, the vehicle miles traveled last year rose by 0.3 percent in 2012, which was attributed to the fact that the economy improved, with more and more people purchasing vehicles.

Also, with regard to seasons, a 12.6 percent increase in deaths was seen in winter, among that of spring, summer, and fall of 2012. Every quarter of the year 2012 also saw a large increase in traffic deaths than in every same quarter during the previous year.

Geographically, fatalities in motor vehicle accidents went up in the Northeast by more than 15 percent, which was the most among other geographical regions in the U.S. The South also saw a significant increase with about 10 percent, and the West comprising California, Arizona, and Hawaii topping it all off with an increase of 9 percent.

What seems to be a steady six-year decline in traffic fatalities leading up to two years ago quickly became a quick reversal in 2012. Hope that these statistics will serve as a reminder of how dangerous traffic accidents can be. Every Los Angeles vehicle accident lawyer, though, still advises motorists to exercise safety while traveling on U.S. roadways.


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