State surpasses 400 traffic-related deaths this year, fastest since 2007 | KSTP.com

State surpasses 400 traffic-related deaths this year, fastest since 2007

State surpasses 400 traffic-related deaths this year, fastest since 2007 Photo: MGN.

Tommy Wiita
Updated: October 25, 2021 01:38 PM
Created: October 25, 2021 12:59 PM

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety announced that the state has eclipsed 400 traffic deaths, the fastest the mark has been reached since 2007.

As of Monday, 401 traffic fatalities have occurred this year. Compared to this time last year, 322 people had died, according to preliminary figures from the department's Office of Traffic Safety. The 400th traffic death this year occurred on Saturday. That marked the earliest date Minnesota has reached that number since Oct. 16, 2007. 

According to preliminary data, the state hasn't seen 400 traffic-related deaths since 2015. 

Last week, DPS officials joined the Minnesota Safety Council to discuss guidance to state employers about educating their respective workers across the state on safe driving habits. The agency is calling on all drivers to be smart while driving and help reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries on the roads. 

"Employers across Minnesota can help change the tragic trajectory, and their partnership represents one of the latest action steps to save lives," Assistant Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety, Booker Hodges, said during a news conference on Oct. 18.

The data released on Monday also revealed the following about the 401 fatalities:

  • 62 motorcyclists (60 at this time last year)
  • 46 pedestrians (36 at this time last year)
  • 7 bicyclists (10 at this time last year)
  • 130 were speed-related (98 at this time last year, 33% increase)
  • 18 distracted-driving related (28 this time last year, 36% decrease)
  • 74% of deaths are male

"All of the work we have done to reduce traffic fatalities on our roads during the past 15 years has been wiped away with the selfish decisions by many on our roads," said Mike Hanson, Office of Traffic Safety director. "Until early 2020, we had been seeing a steady decline in traffic deaths, but for whatever reason, people are ignoring the rule of the law, putting themselves and innocent motorists in harms-way. Until every motorist takes responsibility for their own actions, we'll continue to see the carnage on our roads."

To see the full data report, click here.


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