By: Laura-Jane Hatcher (WRGA News)
It was a deadly holiday for Georgia’s roads.
As of noon on Christmas, the Georgia State Patrol reports that 17 people lost their lives in automobile crashes in the holiday travel period that began Friday at 6pm. This is the highest fatality rate since 2008. Last year, only three people were killed over the 102-hour period.
Among the seventeen dead is a Floyd County resident, who was killed Saturday night on Abrams road when his car left the roadway and struck a tree.
Car wrecks were up overall for the season. In 2011, the GSP investigated 289 crashes with 182 injuries. This year, there was more than a 150% increase in wrecks. The number of injuries swelled too, with 300 people reportedly wounded in car crashes across Georgia.
The holiday period is not over, yet. Beginning 6pm this Friday, State Troopers will continue their increased vigilance on Georgia’s roads in anticipation of the New Year holiday. Traditionally, this period sees a higher rate of wrecks and fatalities, and an increased amount of impaired drivers. In light of this, state troopers will be working alongside local law enforcement to intercept these potentially dangerous motorists.
In case you’re travelling to a News Years party Tuesday, Colonel McDonough, Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Safety, says to make sure your automobile is safe for a long trip. Check the pressure in the tires; make sure the wiper blades work; check headlights break lights, tag signals and the vehicle’s fluid levels. Along with this, make sure to take frequent rest stops and don’t speed.