Monday, December 1, 2008

Fewer Traffic Deaths Reported In California During Thanksgiving Weekend

Today, the California Highway Patrol reported that 33 people died on California roadways during the four-day holiday weekend this year compared to 41 people during the same period last year.

"While I am thankful that fewer people died during the four-day holiday weekend, I am troubled that we continue to needlessly lose lives on the state's roadways," said Commissioner Joe Farrow. "These statistics aren't just numbers; they represent real people with families and friends who mourn their loss.”

During the four-day Maximum Enforcement Period, all available CHP officers were on the road.

DUI arrests by CHP officers totaled 1,530 this Thanksgiving holiday compared to 1,628 last year. Of the 20 vehicle occupants killed on the state’s highways and unincorporated areas that fall under CHP jurisdiction, seven weren’t wearing seatbelts.

“Those seven people might still be alive today if they had simply taken the extra few seconds to buckle up,” Commissioner Farrow said.

With the Christmas and New Year’s holidays fast approaching, the CHP warns that similar Maximum Enforcement Periods will be in effect during those holiday weekends.

“If people will heed our message -- don’t drink and drive, obey the speed limit and always wear seat belts -- upcoming holiday memories can be happy for everyone,” Commissioner Farrow said.

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