Highway Death Tolls Rise for First Time in Six Years

Crash fatalities on U.S. highways in 2012 rose 5.3% as compared to 2011. This number ended a six year run of consistent declines in crash fatalities. Approximately 34,000 people died on highways in 2012 – meaning that 1.1 people die per 100 million vehicle miles driven in the U.S.

The increase in fatalities, Bloomberg reports, “outpaced” the 2012 increase in the number of miles driven by Americans. Americans drove only .3% more than in the previous year.

CTLS researcher Dr. Norman Garrick has conducted research which aimed to compare fatality rates in the United States to those in other countries. Compared to many other developed countries, the U.S has extremely high rates of highway fatalities. The world’s safest country is the Netherlands, where there are only 4 highway deaths per 100,000 citizens. These new numbers put the U.S. around 10 deaths per 100,000 people.