The newly-released report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows traffic deaths have gone down across the country. Unfortunately, pedestrian deaths have reached an alarming level, and traffic deaths here in Pennsylvania are on the rise.
There were 1,190 traffic deaths in 2018, a 4.7 percent increase compared to 2017. However, last year’s total for traffic deaths was the third-lowest number of the past 20 years.
Pedestrian deaths have increased both in Pennsylvania and nationwide. The increase in this state was 34 percent compared to 2017 (201 deaths in 2018 and 150 deaths in 2017).
Trends in Nationwide Traffic Deaths
There was a 2.4 percent decrease in traffic fatalities in 2018 compared to 2017 across the nation. There was also a decrease in the fatality rate per 100 million miles traveled of 3.4 percent – the lowest since 2014.
Unfortunately, pedestrian deaths have gone up 42 percent in the last decade, while overall traffic deaths have declined over the same 10-year period.
One of the main reasons for the increase in pedestrian deaths is distracted driving. Impaired driving is also a major factor, as 76 percent of pedestrian deaths occurred after dark when they had alcohol in their systems.
It is going to take a combination of engineering, enforcement and educational approaches to combat the increase in pedestrian deaths, says Jonathan Adkins, Executive Director of the Governors Highway Safety Association.
Besides pedestrian deaths, speeding deaths declined 5.7 percent. Motorcycle and alcohol-related fatalities also decline 4.7 percent and 3.6 percent respectively.
Unfortunately, alcohol-related fatalities increased in Pennsylvania in 2018:
- Deaths increased to 355 from 335 in crashes involving impaired drivers
- There were 291 deaths in crashes where at least one driver was drinking, compared to 256 the year before
- Deaths in any kind of alcohol-related crash went up to 331 from 293
Injured in an Accident? Call a Licensed Attorney
If you were injured in a car accident or lost a loved one in an accident, call our car accident lawyers in Harrisburg, PA for a free legal consultation.
We may be able to pursue compensation on your behalf for damages, such as medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
There is no cost for your initial consultation, and we do not get paid unless you receive compensation.
Call Schmidt Kramer today to schedule your free legal consultation. (717) 888-8888