Preliminary Semiannual Estimates

Deaths up 9% as mileage rebounds in 2021

The National Safety Council (NSC) estimate of total motor-vehicle deaths for 2021 is 46,020, up 9% from 42,339 in 2020 and up 18% from 39,107 in 2019. Mileage in 2021 rebounded 11% from COVID-19 lows in 2020 and only lags 2019 mileage by 1%. The estimated mileage death rate in 2021 is 1.43 deaths per 100 million vehicle miles traveled, down 2% from 1.46 in 2020 but up 19% from 1.20 in 2019.

medically consulted injury is an injury serious enough that a medical professional was consulted. Based on the current medically consulted injury-to-death ratio of 114:1, and rounded to the nearest thousand, the estimated number of nonfatal medically consulted injuries resulting from crashes in 2021 was 5,246,000.

The National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) reports the official mortality estimates for the United States and is used as a comparison to judge the accuracy of NSC preliminary estimates. The publication of NCHS final mortality estimates generally lags about one year. The most recent NCHS official estimate shows 42,339 deaths occurring in 2020. This compares to the NSC initial estimate of 42,060 with a difference of 279 deaths (<1% difference).

  • Chart
  • Data Table
See data details