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COLUMBUS -- Fifteen people were killed on the state’s roadways this Thanksgiving holiday, according to a press release from the Ohio State Highway Patrol.

During the five-day reporting period, from Wednesday, November 27, at 12 a.m. until Sunday, December 1, at 11:59 p.m., 15 people were killed in 13 fatal crashes. In 2018, seven people were killed in seven fatal crashes.

Of the 15 killed, two were pedestrians, two were not wearing a seat belt, and two involved impaired driving.

“The lack of safety belt usage remains a significant problem,” said Colonel Richard S. Fambro, Patrol superintendent. “Wearing a safety belt remains the single most important thing you can do to protect yourself, your family and your friends from being severely hurt or killed in a crash.”

Troopers arrested 389 people for operating a vehicle while impaired and 172 for drugs. Troopers also issued 1,002 safety belt and 89 distracted driving violations. Throughout the holiday reporting period, troopers also assisted 2,518 motorists.

A statistical analysis of the Patrol’s enforcement activity over the holiday is available at https://www.statepatrol.ohio.gov/links/ThanksgivingReport_2019.pdf

In addition, as part of the Patrol’s ongoing effort to make Ohio roadways safe, troopers continue to focus on impaired driving this month and throughout the holiday season.

“Please don’t make a poor decision that could put your life and the lives of others at risk,” said Governor Mike DeWine. “You can make Ohio safer by actively influencing friends and family to act safely and responsibly behind the wheel.”

In 2018, there were 13,353 OVI-related crashes on Ohio roadways, killing 402 people and injuring 7,884 others. During that same period, troopers removed more than 26,600 impaired drivers from Ohio roadways. OVI-related crashes accounted for 37 percent of all fatal crashes in Ohio in 2018.

“We need motorists to commit to keeping our roads safe by planning ahead, designating a sober driver and insisting that everyone in the vehicle is buckled up,” said Lieutenant Grewal.

To view a copy of the entire statistical recap, visit

https://www.statepatrol.ohio.gov/links/OVI_Bulletin_2019_YearEnd.pdf

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