According to a recent report from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, traffic fatalities rose an estimated 5.3% in 2012.
The study reports that an estimated 34,080 people died in traffic crashes in 2012. In 2011, an estimated 32,367 people died in traffic crashes. If the early estimations are correct, 2012 is the first year with a year-to-year increase since 2005.
Over the last six years, traffic fatalities have been steadily declining. From 2005 to 2011, traffic deaths decreased by 26%.
One factor for the increase may be that in 2012, the average number of miles traveled increased by 9.1 million miles, however, the NHTSA is continuing to collect data from crash fatalities for 2012 from police accident reports and various other sources. The agency says it’s too soon to determine the potential crash factors.
On a positive note, the NHTSA says that early numbers indicate that traffic fatalities for the first quarter of 2013 decreased by 4.4% compared to the first quarter of 2012. In the first quarter of 2013, an estimated 7,200 people died in traffic crashes, whereas in the first quarter of 2012, an estimated 7,530 people died in traffic accidents.