While the overall number of deaths resulting from motor vehicle crashes declined last year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports a disturbing rise in pedestrian and cyclist deaths in 2018.

NHTSA reports 36,560 people died in crashes along U.S. roadways, which was a 2.4% decrease from 2017. However, the agency reports 6,283 pedestrians were killed last year, a 3.4% increase and the most since 1990.

Safety advocates alarmed over trend

While new safety technology shows automakers are doing a better job at protecting drivers and passengers, safety groups say distracted drivers are still a threat to everyone on or near the road. They also note America’s love affair with larger vehicles, such as SUVs and pickup trucks, which cause more damage to people and property.

State and local governments are also being blamed for not taking enough action to make the streets safer for vulnerable road users. Last year an average of 17 pedestrians and two cyclists were killed each day. Critics say politicians need to improve safety by creating pedestrian-only areas, lowering speed limits and upgrading traffic signals and crosswalks.

Ohio statistics show a decline in crash deaths

The Buckeye State saw nearly across-the-board decreases in motor vehicle crash fatalities in 2018 but had the seventh-highest number of traffic fatalities in the U.S. with 1,068. Here are other significant Ohio stats:

  • 111 fewer total fatalities resulted in 2018, a 9.4% decrease
  • 294 people died in alcohol-related crashes, accounting for 28% of all fatalities
  • 127 pedestrians died, 15 fewer than in 2017
  • 22 bicyclists were killed, three more than the year before
  • 145 motorcyclists died, 12 fewer than 2017

Crashes take a staggering toll each year

In addition to the more than 36,000 people killed in traffic crashes last year, 3.6 million more were injured. Of those, nearly 800,000 were hurt seriously enough to require treatment in an emergency room. Despite the extreme physical toll, these accidents cause a tremendous financial burden resulting from medical costs, lost wages and related expenses. If you have been injured in a motor vehicle crash, an experienced personal injury attorney here in Ohio will fight for the compensation you deserve.