U.S. Roadways Become More Lethal During Pandemic

There have been a disproportionate number of crashes and related deaths.

 

Statistics recently unveiled by the National Safety Council showed that in March, despite safer-at-home mandates producing fewer miles driven by U.S. drivers, the fatality rate per mile driven went up by 14 percent when compared with March 2019.

In particular, the data showed that speeding and reckless driving were the primary contributors to a disproportionate number of crashes and related deaths.

Ken Kolosh, the council’s manager of statistics, recently told the Washington Post that, “Although an 8 percent decrease in deaths from one March to the next … is great news, that decrease should have been even greater ... We should have seen closer to an 18 percent decrease in deaths.”

Although the number of miles driven decreased by nearly 19 percent, the number of crash-related deaths and an increase in average speeds has actually led to an increase in some low enforcement patrolling.

About 40,000 people die on U.S. roads each year. Traffic-related deaths were up two percent for the first quarter of 2020.

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