DETROIT (WWJ) – Dangerous and deadly traffic crashes are increasing in Southeast Michigan, according to analysis of traffic crash data released by the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments.
Overall, Southeast Michigan experienced 2,218 additional crashes in 2011 than in 2010. After reaching an all-time low in 2009, the increase in crashes has brought more deaths and injuries, according to SEMCOG.READ MORE: Michigan Matters: Theaters & Politics
In Oakland County, 61 people died in traffic crashes in 2011, up from 54 in 2010, while 46 died in Macomb County, an increase over the 39 who died in 2010. Twenty-four died in Monroe County in 2011, up from 18 in 2010, and 33 died in Washtenaw, up from 20 the year before.
Overall, there were 340 deaths in 2011 in the region, which is up 2.1 percent. There were also 35,557 injuries, which is an increase of 2.5 percent. Although those aren’t necessarily devastating increases, SEMCOG Executive Director Paul Tait said it’s still an alarming trend.READ MORE: CDC: New Listeria Outbreak Tied To 23 Illnesses, 1 Death
“We are concerned that traffic crashes have increased for the second straight year in Southeast Michigan and we will continue to analyze the data,” Tait said. The seven county region represented nearly 44 percent of crashes in the state.
Michigan’s total crashes also increased by less than 1 percent. However, statewide crashes have resulted in 5 percent fewer deaths. According to Tait, the best way to continue this downward trend is to keep using your seat belt.
“We encourage everyone in a vehicle to buckle up all the time.”MORE NEWS: Red Wings Hire Lightning Assistant Derek Lalonde As Coach
For the complete report released by SEMCOG, visit www.semcog.org.