Traffic fatalities declined for the first half of this year, according to estimates released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration released this week.
An estimated 19,515 people died in motor vehicle traffic crashes, representing a decrease of about 3.3% as compared to 20,190 fatalities in the first half of 2022. Fatalities declined in both the first and second quarters of 2023.
“After spiking during the pandemic, traffic deaths are continuing to slowly come down — but we still have a long way to go,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said. “Safety has always been the core mission of this department, and thanks to President Biden, we are delivering unprecedented resources to communities across the country to make their streets safer.”
NHTSA has announced several safety initiatives aimed at reducing traffic deaths, including proposed rulemakings to require automatic emergency braking systems in passenger cars, light trucks and heavy vehicles.
The agency has also published a proposed rule for seat belt warning systems and issued a Standing General Order to collect more data about crashes that occur when automated driving systems and advanced driver assistance systems are engaged.