The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on Tuesday released figures showing traffic fatalities in the United States continued to decline throughout 2019. Some public officials have been suggesting that the positive traffic safety results seen over the past three years has been replaced by the new danger of “superspeeding” while the virus scare empties roads nationwide. A recent traffic study suggests that these anecdotal claims are inaccurate.
NHTSA reported 36,120 highway fatalities last year, down 1.2 percent despite a 0.9 percent increase in traffic volumes. The reductions in fatalities were even greater for car accidents involving pedestrians and bicyclists, which saw 2 and 3 percent drops, respectively. At 1.1 fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled, 2019 represented the second-lowest fatality rate the agency has recorded. Despite this, some are suggesting that 2020 results will be worse.