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Traffic-related deaths up more than 10 percent since 2015

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, during the first half of 2016, there were about 18,000 fatalities on roadways in Louisiana and throughout the U.S. The number reflects an increase of more than 10 percent over the same period in 2015. If the fatalities continue to climb, they will surpass the rates during the 1960s, when traffic death rates were at their highest.

One of the reasons for the increased rate is the improved economy, which has lead to more road traffic. In fact, during the first six months of 2016, motorists drove nearly 50 million miles more than usual, according to the Federal Highway Administration.

To decrease the number of roadway fatalities, the Transportation Department is working on a 30-year plan with the help of safety groups and $3 million in funds from the federal government. The coalition says it wants to bring the number of roadway fatalities to zero by 2046.

Data from safety advocates reveals that nearly 95 percent of traffic-related deaths are caused by driver error. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the surge in roadway fatalities is from higher speed limits. Of the entire amount of vehicle-related deaths during 2013, the institute says that almost 2,000 of them were caused by an increase in speed limits.

Those who have been injured or lost a loved one in a car accident might consider filing a claim for compensation. A local attorney who handles personal injury claims may be able to help the plaintiff through the process.

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