HOLIDAY WEEKEND Patrol reminds motorists to plan, think about safety

Awareness campaigns are helping to save lives, the patrol says.
COLUMBUS -- The Ohio State Highway Patrol is reminding motorists to be prepared for increased traffic during this Thanksgiving weekend.
Motorist awareness and efforts to avoid aggressive and impaired driving will greatly assist troopers and law enforcement officers across Ohio in making this a safe holiday weekend. "We want to ensure that those driving on our highways make it to their destinations safely," said Col. Paul McClellan, patrol superintendent.
"If people can plan ahead, think about their safety and others by buckling up, many serious crashes can be prevented during this typically festive season," he said.
Nearly every day, someone in Ohio dies because of an alcohol and/or drug-related motor vehicle crash.
Patrol enforcement of operating a vehicle impaired (OVI) and aggressive driving arrests are helping to reduce fatalities in Ohio. Nearly one in four enforcement-related arrests made by troopers is for aggressive driving or OVI.
Through October of this year, troopers made 21,391 OVI arrests and 77,897 aggressive-driving arrests.
The patrol's focus on education, enforcement and evaluation has also contributed to a significant drop in rural fatalities this year, compared to last year. This year to date, there have been 39 fewer fatalities on Ohio's rural roads than for the same period last year.
Awareness campaigns such as Buckle Up for a Successful Season and projects such as OhioSafe Commute have saved lives in rural areas and urban interstates.
Last year during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, 10 people were killed in 10 crashes on Ohio's roads. Of the 10 people killed, nine had safety belts available, yet only two were wearing them at the time of the crash.
The patrol urges motorists to call (877) 7-PATROL when they see a disabled vehicle or unsafe driver.

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