September 6, 2011
Fourteen People Die on Virginia Roads During the Labor Day Holiday
Three Separate Crashes Involved Double Fatalities
RICHMOND – Preliminary numbers indicate that fourteen individuals died in eleven crashes during the 2011 Labor Day holiday. This is a slight increase from the previous two years in which the Commonwealth experienced thirteen deaths. The four-day statistical counting period began at 12:01 a.m. Friday, Sept. 2, 2011, and ended at midnight, Monday, Sept. 5, 2011.
“Unfortunately, we had hoped to see the number of fatal crashes decline and not increase, which is extremely discouraging to see such tragic and needless loss of life,” says Colonel W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “We must continue to be vigilant in reminding drivers and passengers to make safety their first priority on the road. Fourteen traffic fatalities is fourteen too many."
Three separate crashes involved double fatalities. They occurred in Fairfax, Fauquier and Lancaster counties. One of the victims involved in the Fauquier County crash was an eight year-old boy.
Two of the fatalities involved motorcyclists, both of whom were wearing motorcycle helmets. The motorcycle fatalities occurred in the City of Danville and Campbell County.
The remaining six crashes took place in the city of Virginia Beach and the counties of Chesterfield, Mecklenburg, Northampton, Prince William and Smyth. Alcohol was a factor in at least one of the traffic fatalities and undetermined in two others. Seven of the victims were passengers and one crash involved a pedestrian. Those killed ranged in age from 8 to 86.
Additionally, troopers arrested 110 impaired drivers and cited 7,475 speeders and 2,164 reckless drivers during the four day weekend. The Virginia State Police 2011 Labor Day enforcement efforts also resulted in 700 safety belt violations and 245 child safety seat violations. Troopers responded to a total of 577 traffic crashes statewide.
In addition to Checkpoint Strikeforce, a DUI-prevention program that incorporates educational outreach and aggressive enforcement, the Virginia State Police also participated in the annual Operation C.A.R.E. traffic enforcement campaign. The Operation Combined Accident Reduction Effort (C.A.R.E.) is a state-sponsored, national program designed to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries caused by impaired driving, speeding and failure to use occupant restraints.
Funds generated from summonses issued by state police go directly to court fees and the state’s Literary Fund, which benefits public school construction, technology funding and teacher retirement.
Find VSP on Facebook! http://www.facebook.com/VirginiaStatePolice