The US desperately needs to address its road safety problem. The first six months of 2021 has seen an increase in US road traffic deaths of 18.4%.
The US Transportation Department says that this is the highest six-month increase in the history of the Fatality Analysis Reporting System. Preliminary data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) suggests that there were around 20,160 fatalities in road crashes in the first six months of 2021. This was a shocking increase of 3,140 from the figure for the first six months of 2020.
Traffic volumes grew 13% on US roads for the first six months of 2021 compared with the low levels seen for 2020.
The figures are of serious concern. While traffic volumes were low at the height of the lockdown period of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, US road deaths actually grew compared with 2019. The fatality rate was high during this period due to increased levels of DUI and speeding amongst US drivers. Now that the threat from COVID-19 is being addressed, it is of key concern that road safety in the US continues to decline.