WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — Wichita police are calling attention to the increased number of vehicle-related fatalities over the past few years.

Captain Wendell Nicholson says that last year, there were 47 vehicle fatalities. So far this year, 38 people have died in motor vehicle crashes.

“We’ve had more traffic fatalities in the last couple of years than homicides. I just think it’s a combination of things,” Nicholson said. “Another trend that we’re seeing, we had 14 pedestrian fatalities this year, which is also a record number for us here in Wichita.”

He says each one of those pedestrian accidents had causes that were all preventable. He says the city is averaging 700-800 accidents per month, a number that has grown since the pandemic began.

“You’ve also seen a spike nationwide in traffic fatalities and pedestrian deaths. It’s not just something that’s unique to Wichita. Most of these, all of these fatalities, are preventable. People just need to slow down, be defensive, and be aware of their surroundings,” Nicholson said.