The Denver Post recently covered CDOT’s release of statistics on traffic fatalities in 2015. According to the article, 545 people died last year in Colorado from a traffic incident. That’s an 11.7 percent increase from 2014, where there were 488 traffic deaths. This was the first year since 2008 that Colorado had more than 500 traffic related death. The article goes on to state that officials believe that one of the factors which has caused the surge in fatalities is the economy. With lower fuel prices, more commuters have been on the road increasing the opportunity for these incidents to arise.
Specifically, there was a major increase in deaths related to motorcycles, with 104 fatalities in 2015. Unfortunately, CDOT didn’t have an explanation for this rise. Really, the only thing to do to decrease these fatalities is to practice safe riding and increase awareness. You can learn more about motorcycle safety on our safety tips page.
Another concern stated in the article is that nearly half of all the victims in passenger vehicles were not properly restrained. That’s right—people aren’t wearing their seat belts. Experts are now considering proposing legislation in Colorado that would make not wearing a seat belt a reason for getting pulled over by the police, or a “primary seat belt law.” CDOT has stated that 15 percent of Coloradans admitted to not wearing a seat belt!
Another grim record this past year was that 14 people were killed on bicycles. Additionally, 64 pedestrians were killed. Furthermore, 32% of fatal traffic incidents involved alcohol. These numbers are sobering. I can’t stress how important it is to be safe and aware while behind the wheel. We all can work together to prevent these types of incidents from happening. In 2015, Governor Hickenlooper announced the “Moving Colorado Towards Zero Deaths” in relationship to transportation. Let’s all work toward that goal!