Statement on 2019 and 2020 Motor Vehicle Crash Fatalities

  • October 1, 2020
150 150 Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, October 1, 2020
CONTACT: Pete Daniels, Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety / / 301-442-2249 (C)


Statement of Cathy Chase, President, Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, on 2019 and 2020 Motor Vehicle Crash Fatality Statistics


Decreases in fatalities caused by motor vehicle crashes on our roadways are a step in the right direction, but we are crawling instead of sprinting toward significant reductions when proven solutions are available.  Additionally, the government’s 2020 projections show that despite a large dropoff in traffic during the COVID-19 pandemic, the fatality rate on our roadways has gone up dramatically.  This tracks with reporting throughout the country about our roadways turning into raceways and risky driving running rampant.

It’s a disturbing trend that should spur swift action to require lifesaving systems like automatic emergency braking, blind spot warning and lane departure warning in all new vehicles.

Impaired driving has also risen while technology to overcome its incidence has been demonstrated to be capable of saving thousands of lives every year.

The U.S. House of Representatives took decisive action earlier this year by passing these and other safety improvements as part of the Moving Forward Act (H.R. 2).  Yet, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) continues to rely on ineffective voluntary agreements while also significantly lagging behind on Congressionally-mandated rulemakings that could be saving lives.  The 36,096 lives lost in 2019 should be a blaring wake-up call to the U.S. DOT to stop ‘falling asleep behind the wheel.’


Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety is an alliance of consumer, medical, public health, law enforcement and safety groups and insurance companies and agents working together to make America’s roads safer.  Advocates’ mission is the adoption of federal and state laws, policies and programs that prevent motor vehicle crashes, save lives, reduce injuries, and contain costs.