Higher Gas Prices = Historic Reduction in Driving = 3,392 Lives Saved So Far in 2008 vs. Last Year
WASHINGTON—Federal safety officials say auto fatalities dropped almost 10% in 2008 through October, a trend overlapping with a historic cutback in driving (see chart above) as well as advancements in safety measures such as technology that prevents rollovers.
If the trend holds up for the year's last two months, highway deaths could reach their lowest level in the 42 years since the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration began keeping records.
NHTSA said Thursday there were 31,110 auto fatalities the first 10 months of 2008. That's a 9.8% decline over the same period in 2007, when there were 34,502 fatalities.
According to Acting NHTSA Administrator David Kelly, "When you talk about reductions in traffic fatalities in one year you are usually talking about hundreds in a good year. The fact that deaths are down 3,000 so far this year is staggering."
HT: Ben Cunningham