Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released fatal traffic crash data collected from all 50 states and the District of Columbia for calendar year 2016. According to NHTSA, there were 37,461 people killed in crashes on U.S. roadways during 2016, an increase from 35,485 in 2015. The number of vehicle miles traveled on U.S. roads in 2016 increased by 2.2 percent, resulting in a 2.6 percent increase in fatalities from 2015. NHTSA found that distracted driving and drowsy driving fatalities declined, while fatalities related to other reckless behaviors such as speeding, alcohol impairment, and failure to wear a seatbelt increased from the previous year. Fatal traffic crashes increased from 2015 to 2016 in almost all segments of the population including passenger vehicle occupants, occupants of large trucks, pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists, alcohol-impaired driving, and time of day (daytime/nighttime).
Over the past decade, NHTSA has reported a general downward trend in traffic fatalities, with a slight increase in 2012, 2015, and 2016. The downward trend is due in part to safety programs such as those that have increased seatbelt use and reduced impaired driving as well as vehicle improvements including technologies such as airbags and electronic stability control. However, with the large increase in fatalities in 2015 and 2016, the decade-long downward trend has been reduced by more than one-third. NHTSA continues to work closely with its state and local partners and law enforcement agencies to address human factors contributing to a vast majority of serious crashes. NHTSA also continues to promote vehicle technologies that hold the potential to reduce the number of fatal traffic crashes each year.
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of a vehicle accident, the experienced lawyers at the law firm of Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner can assist with your claim. Call us today at 713-396-3964 or 800-594-4884 for your free consultation.