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James Humphrey Long Reads Spring 2018 Senior Show

A History of Car Safety

By James Humphrey

Car crashes remain a leading cause of premature death, with 37,461 people being killed in crashes in the United States in 2016 – 1.18 per 100 million miles traveled. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), car crashes are the leading cause of death for 16-24-year olds. But things used to be far worse. In 1966, the year the first federal motor vehicle safety standards were issued, the death toll was 50,894 – 5.50 per 100 million traveled. Had that death rate held in 2016, there would have been 174,606 deaths – nearly five times as many!