Newly released statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show a disturbing increase in the number of pedestrians killed along American roadways in 2018.
The new report says while pedestrian and cyclist deaths rose significantly last year, overall, the total number of traffic fatalities across the U.S. fell by 2.4%.
Key takeaways from NHTSA’s 2018 report
The latest statistics compare last year’s fatalities to 2017 figures. The most notable results include:
- 36,560 people died in motor vehicle crashes
- 6,283 pedestrians were killed, an increase of 3.4% and the most since 1990
- 857 cyclists died, an increase of 6.3%
- Female cyclist deaths soared by 29.2%
- Fatalities involving commercial trucks increased by 0.08%
- Alcohol-related deaths fell by 3.6%
- Speeding-related fatalities decreased by 5.7%
Concerns surface over the rise in pedestrian and cyclist deaths
Safety advocates say federal, state and local governments need to take more steps to protect vulnerable road users, such as pedestrians and cyclists. They say roads need to be widened, and cities need to build more bike paths plus take steps to enhance safety measures at intersections and crosswalks. They also blame distracted drivers and the growing trend of Americans buying larger vehicles, such as SUVs and pickup trucks, which can do more damage.
Georgia sees mixed results in NHTSA’s report
The 2018 federal report shows while Georgia recorded 36 fewer traffic fatalities last year, the state saw a 5.3% increase in alcohol-related deaths. Those 375 fatalities accounted for one-quarter of all deaths on Georgia roads.
Crash injuries cost billions each year
Nearly 6 million motor vehicle crashes occur each year in the U.S., sending 3.6 million people to the emergency room, and nearly 300,000 will be admitted to a hospital. Besides the physical and personal toll, crashes cause billions of dollars in financial consequences for victims. If you have been injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, an experienced personal injury attorney here in Georgia will fight for the compensation you deserve.