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Minnesota traffic deaths increase 6% in 2018

ST. PAUL - Minnesota roadway fatalities increased 6 percent in 2018 over the previous year, preliminary numbers released Wednesday, Jan. 2, from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety show.

Of the 380 deaths, 121 were alcohol-related while 100 were speed-related, each higher than 2017 figures. Overall, there were 26,853 drunken-driving arrests, an increase of 8 percent from the previous year.

Distraction-related deaths were up slightly from 25 in 2017 to 27. More unbuckled occupants also lost their lives, with 90 killed compared to 78 in 2017.

“The time is now to commit to safe driving habits every time you get behind the wheel,” said Mike Hanson, Minnesota Department of Public Safety Office of Traffic Safety director, said in a news release. “No more multitasking, no more getting behind when you are impaired, no more speeding because you are in a rush, and no more excuses about not buckling up. Join the majority of Minnesotans who put safety first when driving and together we can stop the preventable deaths on our roads and save lives.”

October was the state's deadliest month on the roadways with 46 fatalities.

Rob Beer
Rob Beer is manager of Forum News Service in Fargo. The Princeton, Minn., native and a 1993 Minnesota State University Moorhead graduate began working at The Forum in 1991. He is a former graphic artist, assistant sports editor, presentation and online editor at The Forum. He previously worked at the New Ulm (Minn.) Journal and the Huron (S.D.) Plainsman.
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