Traffic deaths increase in York County

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According to PennDOT, deadly crashes decreased around the state last year, hitting an all-time low of 1,208 crashes across the state in 2013.

But in York County, PennDOT reports 44 people died in crashes, more than the year before.

“People are over-driving, if you will, their vehicles, the roadways and their attention span,” says Sgt. Jeff Dunbar of the York Area Regional Police.

Despite the increase, the Center for Traffic Safety says that number is around the average each year for the county.

“The corridors in our region that have high aggressive driving crashes are those that are very congested,” says Wayne Harper, director of the Center for Traffic Safety.

Harper says 17 people in those fatal crashes were not wearing seatbelts. He says not using seatbelts should be a primary offense, the way it is for kids under 18.

Experts say they are encouraged by the statewide decrease in traffic deaths, as the numbers also show fewer deaths related to drunk driving and speeding. However, they say distracted driving continues to rise – not just due to cell phones, but also GPS and other items.