U.S. traffic deaths soared 10.5% in first quarter, safety regulators say

WASHINGTON — U.S. traffic deaths rose by 10.5 percent in the first three months of 2021 even though the number of miles driven fell by 2.1 percent, preliminary data shows.

Traffic deaths have risen dramatically after coronavirus lockdowns ended in 2020 as more drivers engaged in unsafe behavior like speeding, regulators say. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on Thursday estimated 8,730 people died car crashes in the first three months of 2021 in the U.S., compared with 7,900 deaths in the same period last year.

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