HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Are Connecticut roads getting more dangerous? People drove less during the pandemic, but fatal crashes are up. A new report puts Connecticut near the top of the list.
This is all tied to the pandemic. Those lockdown orders went into effect last March, and that’s the same time the traffic deaths increased. It only worsened during the pandemic.
In 2020, Connecticut Troopers responded to some 2,000 few accidents over 2019, but saw an uptick in fatal crashes. The Nutmeg State is not alone.
“The roadways were a lot clearer. People were out there a lot less and the cars that were out there on the road had an open roadway and speed became a factor,” said Trooper Pedro Muniz.
MOST DANGEROUS ROADS DURING COVID-19
Fatality Increase from 2019 to 2020
- SOUTH DAKOTA 33.3%
- VERMONT 31.9%
- ARKANSAS 26.1%
- RHODE ISLAND 25.9%
- CONNECTICUT 22.0%
Nationally, speeding-related deaths were up 11%. and Connecticut became “the 5th most dangerous state in 2020”. To combat the problem, the State Transportation Department is partnering with State Police to step-up enforcement measures.
Speeding, drunk and distracted driving are among the most common causes.
“Ditch the distractions so they can see what’s going on. They may not be the ones speeding but there may be vehicles around them speeding,” said Trooper Muniz. “Accidents happen around them. Ditch those distractions. Extra space between them and other vehicles on the road.”
When you lump Connecticut in with the other New England states, there was an overall decrease in traffic deaths.