In 2012, 215 lives were lost on Utah’s roads in car crashes—the lowest Utah traffic fatalities have been since 1959. We are making progress toward our goal of Zero Fatalities, but we still have a ways to go. These 215 fatalities were preventable and we hope we can continue to see this number decline, ultimately to zero.

Fatality Numbers

Here are five simple ways to save lives—including your own—on Utah’s roads.

  1. Always, always buckle up. Wearing your seat belt is the single most effective thing you can do to protect yourself in a crash. In 2012, buckling up could have saved 67 lives on Utah’s roads. Buckling up takes two seconds to do, and could mean the difference between life or death in a crash. Commit now to always wear your seat belt, and let your passengers know that your car won’t move until everyone is buckled up.
  2. If you’ve been drinking, don’t drive. Designate a driver, call a cab or take public transit. There is no excuse for driving under the influence. Sadly, 41 people died in Utah due to impaired driving in 2012. Alcohol and illegal drugs aren’t the only things that can impair your driving. Prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines and lack of sleep can also impair your ability to drive safely.
  3. Too tired? Don’t drive. Believe it or not, drowsy driving kills. Fourteen fatalities in 2012 are attributed to drowsy driving. If you’re feeling drowsy, pull over and switch drivers, find a safe place to sleep for the night or get out of the car and stretch or jog for a few minutes. Drowsy driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving.
  4. Stay focused on the road. With so many potential distractions, a driver’s attention may easily get diverted if the driver isn’t making a conscious effort to stay focused on the road. It takes just one time of looking away for a brief moment—reading a text, changing the radio or even answering the phone—to cause a disaster. Twenty people died in 2012 in distracted driving-related crashes.
  5. Slow down and don’t drive aggressively. Whether you have a “need for speed” or you’re running a few minutes late, pushing that accelerator a little harder could cost you your life—it cost 43 people theirs in 2012. A total of 49 people died on Utah’s roads in 2012 due to aggressive driving or speeding. Aggressive driving means operating a vehicle in a way that endangers or is likely to endanger people or property.

2012 Zero Fatalities Infographic

Join us as we continue the conversation about Zero Fatalities, what you can do and how we’re doing toward our goal in 2013 by following us on Twitter and liking us on Facebook. You can also review the full 2012 Fatalities Data Analysis report by visiting the Zero Fatalities website.

This post was written by Jane Putnam, Zero Fatalities Team.


  1. Rashael Hansen(Dunn)

    I try to make every one that I know ware one because I had a wreck one time if I had not been wearing it they said that I would have been with out one of My lages if I had not moved my self some and that I would have gone through the windshield to so that show that it saved Me that Day to because I had more then one wreck E-mail

  2. black magic

    I agree with rokli cell phone is really a menace one should be very careful. I have seen a lot of accidents especially on highways. What’s the urgency just switch it off for your own life.

  3. BTI Driving

    I think one of the biggest things that will help is some form of driver training. It’s scary to think that almost 70 people died because they decided not to wear their seatbelts. Drivers need to think first before even starting the engine…

  4. Tom

    Good article, people need to be more aware of how dangerous the car they are driving can be when they are distracted. I recently found this great article from Edmunds with tips to prevent a car accident. It has some excellent ideas to keep in mind when out on the road.

  5. NODD~No Drowsy Driving

    Under 5 ways to saves lives on Utah’s roads. #3 Too tired? Don’t Drive.
    You would think everyone should know this but they don’t!
    Then you put down for a drowsy driver to do these thing if they are feeling tired.
    Find a safe place to stop for the night OR, get out of the car and stretch or jog.
    Stretching & jogging do nothing but maybe get your heart pumping. If your tired only one thing works, sleep. You need to find a safe place pull over drink a beverage that has caffeine in it then take a 15-20 min. nap. No longer or you will feel groggy. That also is about enough time for the caffeine to get into your body to help wake you up. When you wake up you can drink more caffeine if you like. Then stretch and/or jog a bit. This is only a temporary fix. If you have a long way to go start looking for a place to sleep for the night. Drowsy drivers are not only a danger to themselves but to all of us out there on the highways. Thanks.

  6. Cheap Flights 4U

    Very informative infographic and interesting data. I never would have guessed 67 deaths occurred because of improper restraint. Come on people, it’s 2013; you should know by now that wearing seat belts is a necessity.

  7. Naegle Law Firm

    Love the infographic. I am happy to see the upward trend of the DUI related cases end. As a practicing Criminal Defense attorney in Mesa, Arizona, I am very connected with these people and their common poor choices. Seeing this correction is great news!

  8. The Hogle Firm

    I think more people need to understand how driving while tired drastically increases your chances of being a fatal car accident. We have represented several families that have been in fatal crashes where one was driving all night from Utah to Arizona and became tired and continued to drive.

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