It seems as though all the safety campaigns and DUI task forces may be making an impact. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration constantly monitors car accidents, particularly those resulting in fatality, across the country. And even though news of the distracted driving epidemic is constantly making headlines, our roadways are actually safer than they were 60 years ago. According to a recent study, car accident fatalities dropped by 10 percent in the last year. The new stats put our roadways back to the level they were at in 1950 when there were 33,186 reported traffic deaths.
However, you have to take into account that people are driving more than they did back in the fifties, which means there are fewer deaths when you take into account the amount of miles driven. As a personal injury lawyer in Seattle, I was surprised to hear that there are 1.13 deaths per 100 million vehicle miles driven, which is the lowest in history.
That doesn’t mean that the NHTSA is going to slow down on their efforts to eliminate traffic deaths altogether though. They still plan to continue to crack down on drunk drivers and have already reduced accident fatalities caused by impaired drivers by 7% over the last year. According to Administrator David Strickland, “We will not rest until this deadly crime stops.” The drop in traffic deaths has been speculated to be a result of increased seat belt use as well as a poor economy.