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German drivers 56 times safer now than century ago

Written by: Staff

BERLIN, Apr 5 (Reuters) German drivers were 56 times more likely to be killed on the roads 100 years ago than in 2005, official data showed.

In the year up to 1907, some 20 years after the automobile was patented by German engineer Karl Benz, there were 4,864 traffic accidents in which 145 people were killed and 2,419 injured, the Federal Statistics Office said yesterday.

The data were released to mark the 100th anniversary of German traffic statistics.

The number of vehicles registered in Germany surged from 27,026 in 1906 to 56.3 million last year, a 2,083-fold increase.

But road deaths rose by a factor of only 37, the Office said.

Last year, 5,362 people were killed on the roads, continuing a downward trend from a peak of 21,332 in 1970.

''This is a positive development to which official data through its ongoing reporting and analysis of accidents has certainly made a contribution,'' the statistics office said.

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