Annual traffic deaths in Minnesota fall below 400 for first time since 1944

The state has the second-lowest fatality rate in the nation, with just 349 deaths due to traffic crashes in 2011, according to early data from the Department of Public Safety. Officials say seat-belt use is at a record high while DWI arrests are falling.
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The state has the second-lowest fatality rate in the nation, with just 349 deaths due to traffic crashes in 2011, according to early data from the Department of Public Safety. Officials say seat-belt use is at a record high while DWI arrests are falling.

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Minnesota traffic deaths continue to drop

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety says the 368 traffic deaths on Minnesota roads in 2011 represents a fourth consecutive annual drop in road fatalities and the lowest death count on record since 1944 when 356 were killed. The 368 deaths mark a 44 percent decrease from 10 years ago.

MN traffic deaths at lowest rate since 1944

The Department of Public Safety says Minnesota's roads are the safest they've been in over 70 years, or at least less deadly. Preliminary results put traffic deaths under 400 fatalities. That's second best in the nation.

Pedestrian deaths on rise in U.S., Minnesota

A new National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report released this week says the percentage of pedestrians being killed in traffic accidents is on the rise, both nationally and in Minnesota. In 2011 -- the most recent period of data available -- pedestrian deaths accounted for almost 11 percent of the 368 traffic-related deaths in Minnesota.

Minn. hits 205 traffic deaths this year

The 2012 figure is on pace with the 204 deaths at this time in 2011, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety. This year's 205 deaths include four bicyclist, 29 motorcyclists and 18 pedestrians.

Minnesota tops 300 traffic fatalities for year

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety projects we'll reach 355 deaths this year -- which would mark a fourth consecutive drop in traffic fatalities and a 38 percent reduction in deaths from a decade ago.

DWI deaths, arrests down in Minnesota

The annual late-summer enforcement campaign is yielding fewer drunken-driving arrests this year and the number of fatal crashes involving alcohol is continuing a five-year decline, state officials say. Over the past two weekends, 605 drunken drivers were arrested as part of a statewide DWI enforcement campaign. During a similar summer's-end crackdown last year, there were 1,787 arrests over three weekends culminating on Labor Day.