More people died on South Dakota roads and highways in 2020, giving us yet another reason to be glad the year 2020 is now in our rearview mirror.

If having to deal with the coronavirus wasn't bad enough, Dakota News Now is reporting there was also a marked increase in fatalities on South Dakota roads last year, after experiencing an all-time low in motor vehicle-related deaths in 2019.

Tony Mangan with the South Dakota Department of Public Safety said 135 people lost their lives on South Dakota roads in 2020 in 126 fatality-related crashes. That is up from 102 deaths in 2019 when there were 88 fatal crashes reported on South Dakota highways.

2020 also marked the highest highway death toll on South Dakota roads since the year 2014 when 136 people lost their lives driving in South Dakota.

According to Dakota News Now, highway-related fatalities in South Dakota peaked at 203 deaths in 2003. Up until last year, deaths on South Dakota roads and highways had been trending downward since the mid-2000s.

The reported numbers for 2020 are still preliminary at this time and are subject to change, according to Mangan.

Source: Dakota News Now

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