US traffic deaths jump by 10.4 percent in first half of 2016

WASHINGTON (AP) — Traffic fatalities are climbing again this year — up by an estimated 10.4 percent in the first half of the year.

Federal officials today released numbers confirming that an upward trend over the past couple of years is continuing.

The announcement came at an event where government agencies and safety groups put forward an ambitious goal of eliminating traffic deaths and injuries in the United States within the next 30 years.

The sharp increase in deaths this year follows a 7.2 percent jump last year, when there were just over 35,000 fatalities.

The improving economy means people are doing more driving on U.S. roads than ever before. According to the Federal Highway Administration, U.S. drivers put in a record 1.58 trillion miles on the road in the first half of this year, 3.3 percent more than during the same period in 2015.

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