A community newsletter serving New Melle, Defiance, Augus​ta, Marthasville, Dutzow​​ a​nd surrounding areas.


Missouri Roadway Fatalities Decrease for the First Time Snce 2019

Motorcycle fatalities reach record high during the same reporting period

According to preliminary data, there were 989 fatalities on Missouri roadways in 2023. This is a 6% decrease compared to 2022, when there were 1,057 fatalities. This is the first year since 2019 that Missouri has seen a decrease in roadway fatalities.

Despite the progress, nearly three lives are still lost on Missouri roadways every day, leaving plenty of room for improvement in 2024.

The Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety continues to stress the four simple actions that save lives: Buckle Up, Phone Down, Slow Down and Drive Sober.

Some major characteristics observed in roadway fatalities include lack of seat belt use, distracted driving, speed and impairment. These behaviors continue to plague Missouri roadways.

63% of vehicle occupants killed in 2023 were not wearing a seat belt. Distracted driving contributed to more than 100 deaths in 2023, and historically, more than half of the victims are someone other than the distracted driver. Impaired driving accounted for approximately 17% of the fatalities in 2023. Speed and other aggressive driving behaviors remained the top concern, contributing to more than half of the total fatalities.

While overall roadway fatalities were down, motorcyclist fatalities have never been higher. Preliminary numbers indicate that 175 motorcyclists were killed on Missouri roadways in 2023, a 14% increase over the 153 fatalities in 2022. This is the highest number of motorcyclist fatalities ever reported in Missouri and almost 50% higher than the average number of motorcyclist fatalities prior to the repeal of Missouri’s all-rider helmet law in 2020. Safety professionals cite the lack of helmet use as a major contributing factor to the increase.

Missouri’s strategic highway safety plan, Show-Me Zero, covers all these safety topics and takes a comprehensive approach to creating a safe system to reduce and eliminate traffic fatalities.

For more information on the Show-Me Zero plan and to learn how all Missourians can help make the roadways safer, visit SaveMOLives.