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Increase in traffic fatalities puzzle experts

Fatal traffic accidents in the U.S. increased by nine percent in 2012 and experts analyzing the reports are puzzled as to what contributed to the increase after five years of fatal car accidents declining. In the first half of 2012, 16,290 people were killed in traffic accidents according to a report by the U.S. National Highway Safety Administration.

The report did not study the causes of these car accidents, and final data explaining the reasons for the increase may not be available until next year. For now, analysts have several guesses that the weather, economy, gasoline prices or distracted driving behaviors may have all contributed to the increase in traffic fatalities.

The NHTSA said that they will be monitoring the data but it is too early to know the main contributing factors that have led to more fatal car accidents in 2012. The NHTSA recently said that traffic deaths in 2011 were at a 60 year low, which is why many experts are confused by the rise in car accident deaths this year.

Safety advocates are concerned that the increase in distracted driving behaviors and the use of technology has led to the increase in traffic deaths. The Governors Highway Safety Association recently advocated for a ban on hand-held cellphone use by all drivers, which included a call for a national ban on texting while driving. The GHSA also called for all states to enforce mandatory laws that would require convicted drunk drivers to install and use an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.

Source: Huffington Post Healthy Living, "Traffic Deaths Rise For First Time In 5 Years, Experts Puzzled By Increase," Daniel Trotta, Oct. 2, 2012

For more information, please visit our car accident page on our website.

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