In traffic crashes, 36,560 people died; a 2.4% decrease from 2017

There were over 6 million traffic crashes across the country

100 people die every day—– One every 14 minutes

Of the fatalities, 35% in passenger cars and 27% in light trucks, 14% motorcycles,

 20% pedestrians, 2% bicyclists and 4% large trucks. A decrease from 2017 except for pedestrians, bicyclist and large trucks


  • There is an 90% seatbelt use rate nationally. Seatbelts saved over 300,000 lives since 1975. Among children, an estimated 10,000 lives were saved by child restraints during that same time frame.
  • It is interesting to note that 39% of those killed in daytime crashes and 56% in nighttime crashes were unrestrained. But in those crashes where the occupants survived only 12% in daytime and 15% in nighttime were unrestrained.  It is lifesaving to wear a seatbelt.
  • The fatality rate nationally per 100 million VMT (vehicle miles traveled) decreased 3.4 percent from 1.17 in 2017 to 1.13 in 2018


10,511 people died in alcohol related traffic crashes in 2018, a 2.4% decrease from 2017

In national data an alcohol related crash is a crash involving a driver or operator whose bac was .08 or above. This is different than what the definition is for Minnesota.

Testing of drivers in fatal crashes varies greatly across the US. Not all fatally injured drivers were tested.  The results are probably higher than noted here.


The national statistics for 2018 crashes are limited at this time. This information above was derived from the following report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration



Full reports from 2017 are below


2017 National alcohol crash statistics

2017 National crash statistics summary

Do you want quick facts on traffic crashes 2017?

Also access these websites for 2017 statistics state traffic data motorcycles  distracted driving  young drivers


AAA Resource for Driving laws in North America

The AAA Digest of Motor Laws is an online compendium

of laws and rules related to driving and owning a motor

vehicle in the United States and Canada


* information is not available for 2018 at this time

In the United States, teenagers drive less than all but the oldest people, but their numbers of crashes and crash deaths are disproportionately high.  In the United States, the fatal crash rate per mile driven for 16-19-year-olds is nearly 3 times the rate for drivers ages 20 and over. Risk is highest at ages 16-17.

The definition of a “teen involved” crash is any crash with at least one teen driver of any motor vehicle involved. It does not mean that the teen caused the crash.

A total of 2,734 teenagers ages 13-19 died in motor vehicle crashes in 2017. This is 69% fewer than in 1975 and 4% fewer than in 2016. About 2 out of 3 teenagers killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2017 were males, and among females 58%


For more information on 2017 national teen driving statistics go to