Traffic Fatalities Increase in 2015

silver car accidentOntario Provincial Police (OPP) have reported that more people were killed in auto accidents in 2015 compared to the previous year. According to data, 299 people died in car collisions in 2015, compared to 288 in 2014.

OPP reported that driver behaviour contributed to the majority of the accidents, but the number of deaths within the “big four” categories declined. The “big four” includes impaired driving, distracted driving, speeding and not wearing seatbelts.

The data for traffic fatalities in these categories showed that:

  • Drugs and alcohol contributed to 45 deaths in 2015, down from 52 in 2014
  • 69 people died in 2015 as a result of distracted driving, compared to 82 in 2014
  • Speeding caused 61 deaths in 2015, compared to 64 the previous year
  • Failing to wear a seatbelt contributed to 51 deaths in 2015, a decrease from 53 in 2014

Some of the “big four” categories saw record lows last year. The number of alcohol or drug related deaths was the lowest in more than a decade, and inattentive driving deaths were at their lowest since distracted driving laws were first enacted in 2009.

OPP believes that part of the reason for last year’s increase is because there were four times as many accidents with three or more deaths in 2015. There was also the highest number of large commercial transportation accident deaths in eight years. Seventy-one people died in accidents with large trucks in 2015, compared to 66 in 2014.

Police officials have stated that they are encouraged by the decrease in “big four” deaths, but encourage drivers to continue to practice safe driving habits while behind the wheel.

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