- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 24, 2015

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Nebraska saw its highest number of traffic fatalities in seven years in 2014, and some state officials believe that driver complacency may be to blame.

The Omaha World-Herald (https://bit.ly/1BoHrVB ) reports that 225 people died last year as a result of an accident involving a vehicle, according to the Department of Roads’ Highway Safety Division. In 2007, 256 people died on state roads.

According to officials, the 2014 fatalities include 214 drivers and passengers, nine pedestrians and two bicyclists.

Nebraska’s highway safety administrator, Fred Zwonechek, said that the fatalities were frustrating because traffic safety initiatives to increase driver awareness and law enforcement have been put in place. Zwonechek said that complacency leads to unsafe practices such as drinking and driving, speeding, talking or texting on a phone, or not being alert.

“There were other drivers who survived these collisions, but never would have believed at the start of their day that they would be responsible for the death of someone else,” Zwonchek said.

The administrator said that in Nebraska, 55 of the deaths occurred on urban roadways and 170 occurred on rural roads. He also said that 20 of the fatalities involved motorcycles.

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Information from: Omaha World-Herald, https://www.omaha.com


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