According to figures released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Pennsylvania was one of five states that did not contribute to the overall downward trend of traffic fatalities in 2010.
Nationally, traffic fatalities fell from 33,883 in 2009 to 32,885 in 2010, a decrease of over one percent. This drove the fatality rate down to a historic all-time low of 1.1 fatalities per 100 million miles traveled. However, in Pennsylvania highway fatalities rose over five percent from 1,256 to 1,324.
The U.S. Department of Transportation attributes the decline in traffic deaths around the country to improved vehicle rollover protection, distracted and drunk driving campaigns, stricter enforcement of driving laws, and better seat belt use among both drivers and passengers. In Pennsylvania, officials from the state's Department of Transportation said that it is hard for them to pinpoint the reason for an increase in traffic fatalities amidst the national downward trend.