Fatal crashes at lowest level since 1955

An Associated Press story came across saying that deadly crashes on Washington roads are at their lowest level in more than 50 years.
Preliminary statistics from the state’s Traffic Safety Commission show 522 traffic-related deaths last year. That’s the lowest since 1955, when 461 people died in crashes.

That’s when I was born, which is a long, long time ago. It’s pretty amazing considering how much more traffic there is today.

State Patrol Chief John Batiste says strict enforcement of seat belt laws appears to be paying off. Washington’s seat belt use rate is 96.5 percent, third-highest in the nation.

I think divided highways also make a big difference. I remember when Highway 16 wasn’t divided and had a bunch of crossings and there were always serious wrecks.