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Highway Deaths Fall to Record Low

5/8/2012 12:00:00 PM
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Highway fatalities fell last year to the lowest rate per miles driven since such record-keeping began in 1921, the Associated Press reported, citing U.S. government data.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration preliminary data showed there were 32,310 deaths in motor vehicle crashes last year — down 1.7% from 2010 and the lowest number in more than 60 years, AP said.

The number of miles driven on U.S. roadways fell by 35.7 billion miles, or 1.2%, last year. There were 1.09 deaths per 100 million miles traveled, down slightly from 1.11 deaths in 2010 and the lowest on record, NHTSA said.

Data from NHTSA, which is part of the Department of Transportation, did not break out truck-related accidents or fatalities.

Safety experts attributed the decline to a variety of factors, including less driving due to a slow economy, more people wearing seat belts, better safety equipment and efforts to curb drunken and distracted driving, AP reported.

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