All Things Maine
All Things Maine

Friday, December 09, 2005

Rural Roads More Dangerous

A study released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Thursday shows that 42% more fatal crashes occur on rural roads than on highways through cities and suburbs.
In 2003, Montana led the nation with 95.4 percent of its fatal crashes occurring along rural roads, followed by Maine, South Dakota and South Carolina. Rhode Island had the lowest rate with 17.7 percent of traffic fatalities on rural roads, followed by Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New Jersey.

While there are more fatal crashes in rural parts of the country, the amount of traffic along rural thoroughfares was far lower. The report found motorists traveled 10.3 trillion miles on rural roads during the 10 years studied, compared with 16.1 trillion miles on urban roads. [Link]
In Maine, 94.1% of fatal crashes in 2003 occurred on rural roads. It should be noted that Maine's rate of fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled was below the national average in 2003.

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