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NHTSA reported a decrease in highway crash losses as it prepares awareness campaign

Traffic accidents on roads are one of the leading causes of death. According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there was a 3.6% decrease in road traffic accident deaths in 2023, with a total of 40,990 fatalities due to car accidents. Although this figure remains significant, it represents a notable decrease compared to the previous year, which recorded a total of 42,514 lives lost.

Released on April 1st the report shows that the fourth quarter of 2023 marked the seventh consecutive quarterly decline in fatalities compared to the second quarter of 2022. The estimated mortality rate for 2023 also decreased to 1.26 deaths per 100 million vehicle miles traveled, compared to the rate reported in 2022.  In the report the number of deaths in accidents involving trucks from the overall road death toll does not appear.

En la imagen se muestran paramédicos atendiendo un accidente automovilístico

The NHTSA stated that it continues to collect and finalize data on accident deaths for 2022 and 2023 using information from police accident reports and other sources. However, in a related report also published on April 1st, the NHTSA said that the mortality rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled also decreased by 3.6%, from 1.38% in 2021 to 1.33% in 2022.

In 2022, the estimated number of people injured on U.S. roads decreased to 2.38 million, representing a 4.6% drop from the 2.5 million recorded in 2021. The injury rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled (VMT) also decreased by 6.3%, dropping from 80 in 2021 to 75 in 2022.

Campaign to reduce traffic accidents

Sophie Shulman, deputy administrator of the NHTSA, announced during a press conference the launch of a campaign to reduce traffic deaths caused by distracted driving, highlighting the use of cell phones while driving as a major concern. The campaign aims to raise awareness about the dangers and legal consequences of distracted driving.

During the campaign’s inaugural event, Shulman reported that in 2022, 3,308 people died in accidents related to distracted drivers, and nearly 290,000 were injured. She also highlighted that close to 20% of fatalities in such accidents were non-occupants of the vehicle, such as pedestrians and cyclists.

The report indicates that distracted driving is not limited solely to the use of mobile phones, but also encompasses activities such as eating, conversing with passengers, and adjusting vehicle controls such as the radio or air conditioning. Road accidents are a serious matter that requires equal seriousness in addressing to raise awareness among drivers about the risks they face while driving.

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