Cyclist Fatalities Increase by More Than 6% in 2012
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has released it’s annual crash stats report and the news is rather bleak. Following six consecutive years of decline in traffic fatalities that trend was broken in 2012, when the number of fatalities rose 3.3%, an increase of more than a thousand additional casualties from motor vehicle crashes, from 32,479 in 2011 to 33,561 in 2012.
The bad news get worse, as the greatest increase in fatality rates is among pedestrians and cyclists, which increased by 6.4% and 6.5% respectively. Injury for cyclists involved in motor vehicle collisions likewise increased in 2012, by 2.1%. Alcohol-related fatalities rose by almost five percent and accounted for more than 30 percent of all traffic fatalities in 2012.
While the report shows that streets across the country are growing more dangerous despite heightened efforts to protect the most vulnerable road users, it reveals that traffic fatalities have dropped by 10,000 in over the past 10 years, and that even despite the increase in alcohol-related deaths, there has been a sharp decline in fatalities involving young drivers (aged 16-20) and alcohol, which decreased by 15 percent in 2012.
The full report on Motor Vehicle Crashes in 2012 is available here.
About Krista Carlson
A regular contributor to the print edition of Urban Velo, Krista Carlson is a cyclist obsessed with bike polo, baking, pickles, and all things bike-y. She is a native Angeleno and is madly in love with the city and everything that makes it the beautiful, crazy place that it is.