New Fatality Data Shows Transportation Spending Doesn't Match Transportation Reality | Rails to Trails
The release of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) annual report on traffic fatalities made the news last week for one significant reason: for the first time since 2005 the number of people killed on U.S. roads increased - up 3.3 percent from 2011.
What does this mean for those of us who walk or bike for our daily transportation needs?
The NHTSA data finds that pedestrians and bicyclists accounted for nearly a third of the increase in deaths (327 out of 1082) over 2011. This is the third straight year that walking fatalities have increased and the second for biking. And the increase has been particularly marked in the past 12 months - up 6.5 percent for people walking and 6.4 percent for people riding bikes.
It is troubling to see that not enough is being done to protect those of us who walk and bike for our mobility needs.
In an effort to better understand what these numbers tell us about broader transportation patterns, we took a closer look at the NHTSA data over the past few days, and here a few key takeaways.