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Arizona motor-vehicle fatality rate increased in 2013

PHOENIX — According to the statistics released by the Arizona Department of Transportation, the number of deaths in motor-vehicle crashes increased by 2.8 percent in 2013.

Last year a total of 844 people were killed on Arizona roads, 23 more than the year before.

The total number of crashes increased last year as well. The total went from 103,909 in 2012 to 107,348 in 2013: a 3.3 percent increase.

Pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities rose in the past year. Pedestrian fatalities increased from 131 in 2012 to 158 in 2013. The death in bicyclists jumped significantly from 18 in 2012 to 30 in 2013.

ADOT Director John Halikowski released a statement following the latest statistics.

“Every driver holds the key to reducing crashes and saving lives,” said Halikowski. “Our coalition of state, federal and local agencies will complete an updated Strategic Highway Safety Plan this summer to guide us in our continuing efforts to reduce the number and severity of crashes on all of Arizona’s public roadways.”

Despite many increases there was one significant decrease in fatalities last year. Alcohol-related deaths on the road decreased from 283 in 2012 to 262 in 2013; a decrease of over 7 percent.

Governor’s Office of Highway Safety Director Alberto Gutier said,

“The decrease in alcohol-related crashes and deaths is welcome news but doesn’t change our mission to stop impaired driving,” said Gutier. “Whether it’s our tougher laws, stepped up law enforcement or public awareness campaigns, we have to keep up the battle because nearly a third of the fatal crashes in the state last year were alcohol-related.”

For more ADOT 2013 Arizona crash facts, click here.