MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - State officials say traffic fatalities on Alabama's rural roads dropped to their lowest level in 23 years in 2008 due to stricter enforcement, new safety features on roads and less driving by motorists due to soaring gas prices.
Gov. Bob Riley says state troopers recorded 633 fatal accidents on rural roads in 2008. That's down 17 percent from last year and is the lowest number since the state recorded 618 deaths in 1985. Alabama's experience parallels what's going on nationally.
Through October, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said traffic deaths nationwide were down nearly 10 percent from the same period the prior year.