WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- Traffic fatalities in DC are up from all of last year, and we're only in September, according to the Automobile Association of America.
"At least 23 persons have lost their lives in traffic crashes in Washington, D.C. as of Monday, September 23, 2013, according to preliminary data from the Metropolitan Police Department (MPDC). That compares to only 12 motor vehicle traffic fatalities by the same date in 2012," AAA announced in a news release.
In 2012, a total of 19 people died in traffic crashes, AAA said.
"This comprises a 91.6 percent spike in the city's highway death toll period over period, figures from the MPD's Major Crash Unit show," AAA reported.
Four of those people died in July. One of them was a motorcyclist, another a motorist who died in a single car crash and the two other July fatalities were pedestrians.
"... A 37-year-old pedestrian who was struck by a dump truck at the intersection of 4th and Massachusetts Avenue, N.W. Although the incident occurred June 18, she finally and fatally succumbed to her injuries on July 29. A 30-year-old woman lost her life on July 25 after she was struck by an SUV while she was attempting to cross the 500 block of Eastern Avenue, N.E. from the Maryland side of the roadway, a review of MPD news releases shows," AAA reported.
Still, the District experiences an average of 20,000 vehicle crashes per year. The jolting spike in traffic-related fatalities is unsettling to drivers, walkers, cyclists, joggers and the elderly.
Using a different rubric, NHTSA calculations show that the overall number of traffic fatalities declined 61 percent between 1975 and 2011 in the District of Columbia. What's more, the overarching rate of motor vehicle fatalities in the city plummeted 67 percent 1975-2011, the federal agency says. The latter statistic tracks the fatality rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled. Traffic safety on streets and highways across the District, the region, and the nation is of primary concern to AAA.