Based on recent crash death rates, which have been on the rise since 2014, the National Safety Council predicts this Labor Day will result in 438 people being killed during the three-day holiday weekend – proving to be the deadliest since 2008.
Despite better safety equipment in cars, car crash deaths are rising with about 19,100 people being killed on U.S. roads since January — enough to fill 382 school buses — and 2.2 million were seriously injured, the council says.
At the same time, more and more cars come equipped with varying degrees of safety features that are proving to save more lives in crashes; which include more airbags, automated braking, blind spot warnings, backup cameras, etc.
“It’s a complicated situation because cars are definitely getting safer, but you could have all the air bags or warnings in the world and if you’re not paying attention something bad can happen.” says Kelley Blue Book managing editor Matt DeLorenzo.
The increase in driving deaths could reflect new threats to auto safety, like driver distraction from infotainment systems and smartphones.
“These numbers could be lower if distracted driving wasn’t an issue,” DeLorenzo says. “Ten years ago, people weren’t using smartphones as much, so I think if there was a study on distracted driving (it would show) there share of fatalities has been growing and that’s keeping the numbers up.”
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Thanks to: USA Today