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Transportation Final 4-15-09 -   1.1 Fatalities State Routes

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Transportation Final 4-15-09
1. Safety
2. Preservation
3. Mobility
4. Environment
5. Stewardship
Current Conditions
Action Plan

1.1 - Fatalities on State Routes and Interstates

Are we decreasing fatalities on state routes and interstates? 

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Data Notes
Data Source: Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) located at the WTSC; WSDOT Transporation Data Office. Fatalities recorded in FARS as of 3/10/2009.
Measure Definition: A traffic fatality in FARS is someone who dies within 30 days of a crash as a result of injuries sustained in that crash, which must involve at least one motor vehicle on a trafficway customarily open to the public.
Target Rationale: In order to achieve Target Zero, the State must experience 13 fewer fatalities per year on state routes and interstates.
Link to Agency Strategic Plan: Washington State's Strategic Highway Safety Plan, Target Zero, seeks to eliminate traffic fatalities on all public roads by 2030.

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of unintentional death among Washington residents ages one to 44. Nonfatal injury hospitalizations are five times more common than fatalities and may result in lifetime disability (WA DOH). In 2005, the economic cost of motor vehicle crashes in Washington State totaled  $5.6 billion (WSDOT).

Notes: (optional)

Number of fatalities for 2008 is preliminary and subject to change as more information becomes available. FARS records information on over 100 different coded data elements that characterize the crash, the vehicle, and the people involved. The Washington State FARS team consists of two analysts located at the WTSC.
Also Available
Action Plan: Yes
Extended Analysis: Yes

 Display Drill Down Measures


 Summary Analysis

  • Traffic fatalities on state routes and interstates are decreasing.
  • Washington's 2007 fatality rate on state routes and interstates was 0.86 fatalities per 100 million vehicle-miles traveled, our state's lowest ever.  *As of March 10, FARS records 233 fatalities on state routes and interstates in 2008.
  • Travel: Some of our fatality drop in 2008 is likely due to a reduction in highway-related vehicle travel.  According to the WSDOT, statewide travel volumes in 2008 decreased by 3.2% compared to 2007 (link to chart).  We are currently analyzing data to determine whether traffic fatalities in that period declined by a similar percentage. 
  • Enforcement: WSP is conducting tactical analysis using GIS mapping and refined statistical techniques.  We are now looking beyond the outputs and into the outcomes in order to predict future challenges.