The rate of fatalities from traffic accidents sharply rose in the second quarter of the year, which was during the height of the coronavirus pandemic, despite far fewer cars being on the roads, Axios reports.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that traffic fatality rates jumped by 30% last spring, reversing a three-year-long trend towards fewer traffic deaths.
“We’ve never seen trends like this and we feel an urgency … to turn this around as quickly as possible,” NHTSA deputy administrator James Owens told Axios.
The administration found that while total traffic volume dropped by 16% in the first half of the year, traffic deaths only fell by 3%, with 1.42 fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled, a significant increase from the rate of 1.10 during the first quarter.
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