Safety council says auto fatalities dropped in 2013


Michael S. Williamson/Washington Post Michael S. Williamson/Washington Post

The number of fatal vehicle accidents in the U.S. declined by 3 percent from 2012, the National Safety Council said Wednesday in its preliminary estimate of roadway deaths in 2013.

The council estimated there were about 35,200 fatalities in 2013. The nonprofit safety group also estimated that crashes requiring medical attention fell 2 percent from 2012, to a total of 3.8 million. The council said the higher number of fatalities in 2012 appeared to be a one-year bump, partially due to a mild winter.

It estimated the cost of motor vehicle deaths, injuries and property damage in 2013 at $267.5 billion, a 3 percent decrease from 2012.

The council receives monthly motor vehicle fatality data from 50 states and the District. It counts fatalities that occur with a year of the crash. Its tally  differs from data compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which counts traffic fatalities that occur within 30 days of a crash and only those occurring on public roadways.

Ashley Halsey reports on national and local transportation.
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