RICHMOND, Va. – Traffic deaths in Virginia reached a three-year high this Labor Day weekend, according to Virginia State Police.
Twelve people were killed in 11 crashes during the four-day holiday weekend. The 11 crashes happened in Carroll, Culpeper, Fairfax, Page, Prince William, Smyth, Tazewell and York counties and the cities of Lawrenceville, Newport News and Norfolk.
The crashes claimed the lives of three motorcyclists, a motorcycle passenger and three pedestrians. Of the remaining five crashes, two people who were not wearing seatbelts have died.
The 12 deaths represents the highest number of traffic deaths in the holiday weekend since 2015, when 16 people died.
Last year, there were only five traffic crashes on Virginia’s highways.
“For most, Labor Day marks the close of summer, the last neighborhood cookout and the start of a new school year, but for 12 families – the families of those who experienced the loss of a loved one this weekend – this holiday is forever changed, ” said Col. Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police superintendent. “It’s nothing short of alarming to have a 140 percent increase in fatalities compared to last year. What’s more surprising is that many of the crashes we see on Virginia’s highways could be prevented if we all do our part toward safety. That means buckling up, never driving impaired and always keeping our focus on the road.”
During the 2018 Labor Day weekend, Virginia State Police troopers cited:
- 8,427 speeders
- 2,050 reckless drivers.
- 1,024 occupant restraint violations,
- Including 227 to adult motorists who failed to secure a juvenile passenger in a child safety seat, booster seat or seat belt.
- In addition, 72 drunken drivers were arrested and charged with DUI.