Missouri traffic fatalities pass 1,000 for the first time in over 15 years

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – For the first time since 2006, Missouri’s traffic fatalities surpassed 1,000.

According to the Missouri Department of Transportation’s data, 1,004 people were killed in Missouri traffic crashes in 2021. This marks the second straight year of growing fatality totals after nearly a decade of decline.

“These fatalities are unacceptable, alarming and preventable,” said MoDOT Director Patrick McKenna. “There are simple things we can all do to make a real impact on our roadways. Wearing your seat belt is your best line of defense in a crash and avoiding distractions can prevent those crashes in the first place. Buckle up, phone down.”

According to MoDOT research, the lack of seat belt use continues to be a common denominator in fatal crashes. Approximately two-thirds of vehicle occupants killed were not wearing a seat belt.

MoDOT states that drivers using a cellphone were involved in more than 2,200 crashes in Missouri in 2021.

Missouri’s strategic highway safety plan, Show-Me Zero, focuses on four ways every Missourian can help eliminate traffic deaths:

  • buckle up
  • phone down
  • slow down
  • drive sober

For more information on the Show-Me Zero plan and to learn how all Missourians can help make the roadways safer, visit www.savemolives.com.

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