As Washington went quiet in the early days of the pandemic, Staci Hoff figured at least it would mean fewer deaths on the roads in 2020. She was wrong.
Then, as cars began returning in 2021, she hoped maybe the carnage would slow as congestion increased and speeds decreased. She was wrong again.
Washington ended 2021 with more fatal and serious car crashes than it’s seen in 15 years. On the heels of an especially deadly 2020, the continued rise is a frustrating and increasingly confounding trend that’s playing out nationwide. Experts can’t point to a single reason.
“We have talked 2020 to death, but it is the end of 2021 and this was way worse,” said Hoff, research director for the Washington Traffic Safety