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Licking County traffic deaths increase

NEWARK – The Licking County Health Department’s (LCHD) Safe Communities Coalition reports seven traffic fatalities during the second quarter of 2017, July 1 to September 30, in Licking County.

Of the seven fatal crashes, two involved motorcycles, three were due to speed, one was a pedestrian in a work zone, and one was due to following too closely. Compared to the third quarter in 2016, there were only two fatal crashes.

Year-to-date, there have been twenty reported traffic fatalities in 2017, which is seven more than were reported by this time last year.

“Impaired driving and lack of seat belt use continues to be issues in Licking County,” said Hilary Requejo, Safe Communities Coordinator at LCHD. Seven crashes have been confirmed to be alcohol and/or drug-related; some are still under investigation. Seven individuals, out of sixteen fatal crashes where a seat belt was available, were not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.

The Safe Communities Coalition and local law enforcement will continue efforts to decrease fatalities by reminding everyone to buckle up, every trip, every time and to always drive sober. Two simple choices, but two that can prevent death and save lives.

The Safe Communities Coalition reminds drivers not to drink and drive and to plan ahead with a designated driver. “The message is simple, if you drink, do not drive. Do not take the risk. Find an alternate, safe way home so you do not risk your life or the lives of others,” said Requejo.

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