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NHTSA releases preliminary 2023 accident fatality figures

On Behalf of | Apr 8, 2024 | Car Accident

Traffic accident fatalities in Florida and around the country fell for the second consecutive year in 2023 according to a report released on April 1 by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The preliminary figures indicate that 40,990 people lost their lives on the nation’s roads in 2023. Traffic accidents claimed 42,514 lives in 2022. Road deaths across the country have risen significantly in the last decade despite advances in road design and automobile safety technology. In 2014, 32,744 people were killed in motor vehicle accidents.

Distracted driving

A NHTSA official commenting on the accident fatalities report said distracted driving is making road travel in the United States far more dangerous. Accidents involving distracted drivers claimed 3,308 lives and caused more than 289,000 injuries in 2022 according to the government road safety watchdog, and about one in five of the road users killed in these motor vehicle accidents were pedestrians, cyclists and other road users not traveling in passenger vehicles. Distracted driving fatalities and injuries in 2023 were not included in NHTSA’s preliminary figures.

Florida accident fatalities

Figures released by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles suggest that driving in Sunshine State is more perilous than it is in many other parts of the country. In 2023, 394,219 traffic accidents in Florida claimed 3,409 lives and caused 251,832 injuries. The road users killed in Florida in 2023 included 779 pedestrians, 604 motorcyclists and 224 cyclists.

Lowering accident deaths

The NHTSA and FLHSMV figures reveal that vulnerable road users like pedestrians and cyclists often pay the price for reckless behavior like speeding and distracted driving. If traffic laws were enforced more rigorously and the penalties for putting other road users in danger were more severe, motorists may be more likely to think twice before engaging in these dangerous practices.