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The Number of Automotive Fatalities Decreased in 2017

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Modern safety features and fewer drunk drivers on the road helped lower the number of on-road deaths in 2017

On-road fatalities are back on the decline after a few years of increases

Contemporary cars come loaded with a wide array of safety features and systems. While these safety features might sometimes seem excessive, the data shows that they are doing their part to keep passengers safe.

In fact, the number of automotive fatalities in 2017 decreased from the previous year, and those number are much lower than they were 40 years ago.

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In 2017, a reported 37,133 people died in car crashes. In 2016, the number of automotive fatalities was precisely 37,806.

In even more encouraging news, on-road fatalities were even lower during the first half of 2018. During the first six months of the year, approximately 17,120 people nationwide died in car crashes, according to estimates from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This is 3 percent lower than the number of on-road deaths during the first half of 2017.

These declining automotive fatalities are a welcome sign after the last few years. In 2014, fewer than 33,000 people died in automotive accidents, but that number began to rise in subsequent years.

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Still, today’s fatalities are quite low compared to the number of on-road deaths in the 1970s. During this time, the number of automotive deaths rose above 50,000 per year.

With stronger structures and standard airbags, contemporary car models are much more safe than their 1970s counterparts. Modern automobiles also benefit from new safety technologies, such as lane departure warnings and automatic emergency braking.

2014 GMC Acadia Overview

Contemporary safety technology is providing drivers with an extra layer of on-road security

Another factor in decreasing automotive fatalities is a more rigid enforcement of drunk driving laws. During the 1970s, 60 percent of traffic fatalities involved alcohol use; today, that number is less than 30 percent.

With many drivers constantly distracted by their phones, the modern world presents a whole new set of potential on-road hazards. Fortunately, these statistics indicate that traffic fatalities are on the decline once again.

News Source: Ars Technica