Lower death rates in high-income comparison countries suggest that progress is possible
From the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
About 90 people die each day from motor vehicle crashes in the United States, resulting in the highest death rate among 19 high-income comparison countries.
The country has made progress in road safety, reducing crash deaths by 31 percent from 2000 to 2013.
But other high-income countries reduced crash deaths even further—by an average of 56 percent during the same period, according to the latest Vital Signs report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Compared with other high-income countries, the US had the:
- most motor vehicle crash deaths per 100,000 population and per 10,000 registered vehicles;
- second highest percentage of deaths involving alcohol (31 percent); and
- third lowest front seat belt use (87 percent).
If the U.S. had the same motor vehicle crash death rate as Belgium—the country with the second highest death rate after the U.S.—about 12,000 fewer lives would have been lost and an estimated $140 million in direct medical costs would have been averted in 2013.
And if the U.S. had the same rate as Sweden—the country with the lowest crash death rate—about 24,000 fewer lives would have been lost and an estimated $281 million in direct medical costs would have been averted in 2013. [Read more…]