2 - Transportation and Safety

2 - Transportation and Safety

The highest priority of the U.S. Department of Transportation is to promote safety. Although progress has been made in reducing fatalities, transportation remains the leading cause of accidental deaths and injuries in the United States. In 1999, about 95 percent of transportation fatalities and an even higher percentage of injuries occurred on the nation's roadways.

Table 2 Fatalities by Transportation Mode

Excel | CSV

Mode 1970 1980 1990 1995 1999
Large air carrier 146 1 39 168 12
Commuter air N 37 7 9 12
On-demand air taxi N 105 51 52 38
General aviation 1,310 1,239 767 734 628
Highwaya 52,627 51,091 44,599 41,817 41,611
Railroadb 785 584 599 567 530
Transitc N N 339 274 299
Commercial ship: Vessel casualties 178 206 85 46 44
Commercial ship: Nonvessel casualtiesd 420 281 101 137 67
Recreational boating 1,418 1,360 865 829 734
Gas and hazardous liquid pipeline 30 19 9 21 21

a Includes occupants, nonoccupants, and motor vehicle fatalities at railroad crossings.
b Includes fatalities from nontrain incidents, as well as train incidents and accidents. Also includes train occupants and nonoccupants, except motor vehicle occupants at grade crossings.
c Fatalities resulting from all reportable incidents, not just accidents. Includes commuter rail, heavy rail, light rail, motor bus, demand responsive, van pool, and automated guideway.
d Fatalities unrelated to vessel accidents, e.g., individual falling overboard and drowning.
Key: N = data do not exist or are not cited because of reporting changes.

Source: U.S. Department of Transportation, Bureau of Transportation Statistics, National Transportation Statistics 2000 (Washington, DC: In press), table 2-1.