SALT LAKE CITY

Auto-related deaths spike nationally, Utah is no exception

May 17, 2022, 12:56 PM

Photos of the crash that followed the police chase....

The national spike in auto-related deaths has prompted a plea to law makers for action. Photo credit: Martha Harris, KSL NewsRadio.

SALT LAKE CITY– The president of Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety (Advocates), Cathy Chase, released a statement addressing the national spike in auto-related accidents and deaths. Chase called on the U.S. Department of Transportation, Congress, and state legislatures to act now.

Chase pointed to the number of crash-related fatalities in 2021, calling it a growing public health crisis. 

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motor vehicle crashes killed an estimated 42,915 people in the U.S. in 2021. Comparatively, this number was 10.5% in 2020. Furthermore, fatalities involving pedestrians increased by 13% from 2020 to 2021

How has Utah responded to Auto-related deaths

Recently, Utah has reported a number of vehicle-related deaths. One included a pregnant woman in Salt Lake City earlier this month. The uptick in auto-pedestrian fatalities prompted Salt Lake City Mayor Mendenhall to hold a press conference on May 5, 2022. 

“Everyone deserves to walk or bike through our neighborhoods and enjoy our community without fear of becoming injured or killed by a moving vehicle,” Mendenhall said. 

Also, Mendenhall announced a new partnership between the city and the Utah Department of Transportation’s Zero Fatalities education program as well as the implementation of the “Safe Streets Task Force” to target the rise in accidents. 

Aiming for solutions

The Advocates cited reckless driving, including speeding, impairment, and lack of seat belt use as contributing factors to the issue. Chase urged states to enact commonsense laws to save lives.

“Every state has an opportunity to take commonsense steps that will reduce motor vehicle crashes, deaths, and injuries,” Chase said in her statement. 

The statement also calls for a focus on auto technology such as

  • Minimum performance standards for advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) 
  • Requiring proven crash avoidance technologies in all new vehicles such as automatic emergency braking (AEB), lane departure warning (LDW), and blind-spot detection (BSD) as required in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act
  • When appropriate, these performance standards should account for the safety of vulnerable road users, including pedestrians and bicyclists. 
  • U.S. DOT to advance minimum performance standards for impaired driving prevention technology, which is also Congressionally mandated. 
  • Action on numerous safety advances including requirements for adaptive beam headlights, improved hood and bumper standards, changes to the New Car Assessment Program (NCAP), and commercial motor vehicle safety upgrades

Utah has had 105 auto-related accidents so far in 2022.

Related Stories: 

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Salt Lake City

women's world cup usa thailand...

Esme Sanchez Estevez

SLC chosen as possible FIFA Team Base Camp for 2026 World Cup

FIFA has released some information related to the upcoming World Cup 2026. Potential training sites including Salt Lake City are being considered.

12 hours ago

Video released by the Salt Lake City Police Department shows a thief getting into the blue Lamborgh...

Mariah Maynes

Police ask for help locating Lamborghini stolen from SLC airport

Salt Lake City Police Department is asking for help identifying a suspect accused of stealing a Lamborghini from Salt Lake International Airport.

20 hours ago

J-Note statue outside the Delta Center in Salt Lake City, Utah...

Brian Preece, KSL Sports

Delta Center to host NBA & NHL draft parties in June

The Smith Entertainment Group is making Delta Center the place to be this summer as it prepares to host NBA and NHL draft parties.

23 hours ago

A rendering of a proposed "sports, entertainment, culture and convention center" surrounding Delta ...

Carter Williams, ksl.com

Delta Center renovations could begin next year. Here’s what some of Smith’s plans look like

Construction to remodel the Delta Center could begin as early as April 2025, Smith Entertainment Group officials said Tuesday.

23 hours ago

UDOT repaving State street...

Sam Herrera

Expect closures as UDOT repaves State Street in Salt Lake

The Utah Department of Transportation is set to repave State Street soon. UDOT says delays should be expected during the project.

24 hours ago

The Delta Center is pictured in Salt Lake City....

LINDSAY AERTS

Smith Entertainment Group reveals new details about Salt Lake revitalization plan

In an interview with KSL TV, Smith Entertainment Group revealed more details of their planned revitalization of Downtown Salt Lake City.

2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Underwater shot of the fisherman holding the fish...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Your Bear Lake fishing guide

Bear Lake offers year-round fishing opportunities. By preparing ahead of time, you might go home with a big catch!

A group of people cut a purple ribbon...

Comcast

Comcast announces major fiber network expansion in Utah

Comcast's commitment to delivering extensive coverage signifies a monumental leap toward a digitally empowered future for Utahns.

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.

...

Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

Auto-related deaths spike nationally, Utah is no exception