JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (Press Release Edited / KY3) – For the first time since 2006, the number of road fatalities in Missouri has exceeded 1,000.

According to preliminary data, 1,004 people were killed in traffic crashes in Missouri in 2021, an increase of almost 3% from 2020 and marking the second consecutive year of increases in the number of fatalities after nearly d ‘a decade of steady decline.

“These deaths are unacceptable, alarming and preventable,” said Patrick McKenna, director of MoDOT. “There are simple things we can all do to have a real impact on our roads. Wearing your seat belt is your best line of defense in an accident, and avoiding distractions can prevent these accidents in the first place. Buckle up, call down.

Lack of seat belt use continues to be a common denominator in fatal crashes. About two-thirds of the occupants of killed vehicles were not wearing seat belts. Preliminary data shows that cell phone drivers were involved in more than 2,200 crashes in Missouri in 2021, although distracted driving remains vastly underreported. And 40% of fatal crashes this year involved speeding or driving too fast for the conditions.

“The Missouri State Patrol is dedicated to promoting safety on our freeways and reducing the number and severity of traffic accidents,” said Missouri State Highway Patrol Superintendent Col. Eric Olson. “Every motorist who uses Missouri’s roads plays an important role in reducing road fatalities. The public can help us prevent fatalities by paying attention to the full-time job of driving, obeying all traffic laws and wearing a seat belt. “

Missouri’s road safety strategic plan, Show-Me Zero, focuses on four ways every Missourian can help end road fatalities: buckle up, call, slow down, and drive sober. For more information on the Show-Me Zero plan and to find out how all Missourians can help make roads safer, visit

To report a correction or typo, please send an email [email protected]

Copyright 2022 KY3. All rights reserved.

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