(St. Paul, MN) – The number of fatalities on Minnesota roads increased from the previous year, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

There were 380 traffic deaths on Minnesota roads in 2018, compared to 358 in 2017, according to preliminary number DPS released January 2nd.  Two of the most recent traffic deaths occurred on roadways in southern Minnesota, one in Mower County; the other in Lyon County.

Alcohol-related crashes were the leading cause of traffic death, with 121 reported, compared to 113 in 2017.  Speed and unbelted drivers made up the remainder of the top three causes for preventable traffic deaths.  October was the deadliest month of 2018 on Minnesota roads, with 46 traffic fatalities.

DPS will campaign again in 2019 against dangerous behaviors behind the wheel.  For most of April, distracted driving will be a focus for extra enforcement, while campaigns for seat belts, speed, and DWI’s will come later in the year.

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