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Deaths on U.S. Roads Soared to 16-year High in 2021

Fatal multi-vehicle crashes climbed 16 percent

Road deaths soared more than 10 percent last year, compared with a year earlier, reaching 42,915, according to estimates released Tuesday by federal transportation officials. It was the highest number of fatalities nationwide since 2005.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) also reported that it was the largest annual percentage increase in the history of its Fatality Analysis Reporting System, which began in 1975.

The agency said fatal multi-vehicle crashes and crashes on urban roads were up 16 percent. Fatalities among senior citizens jumped 14 percent. Deaths involving at least one large truck soared 13 percent, as did pedestrian fatalities. Deaths of bicyclists were up 5 percent, as were fatal crashes involving speeding and alcohol. Driving overall was up 11 percent.

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