- Associated Press - Friday, January 8, 2016

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - After two years of declining numbers, Missouri recorded more than 800 traffic fatalities in 2015.

The Missouri Department of Transportation reports the state recorded 853 traffic fatalities last year, an 11.4 percent increase over the 766 recorded in 2014. It was the first time more than 800 people had died on the state’s roads since 2012, when 826 people died.

The transportation department says in a news release that 63 percent of the traffic fatalities last year were not wearing seat belts. And 50 percent of the people who were thrown from their vehicles were not wearing seat belts.

The leading causes of death include speeding, driver inattention and impaired driving. The department says two new trends emerged last year - increases in improper lane use and substance-impaired driving.

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