Labor Day weekend is normally a special time for families and friends to celebrate some of the later days of summer with a nice, long weekend. Cookouts, water sports, and general revelry are common during this time, and most people find themselves left with fond memories of the still long days and the slightly cooler nights.
However, for many people in Virginia, this past Labor Day weekend was not the fun and exuberant time that it normally is. According to a report issued by the Virginia State Police, between August 31st and September 3rd there were a total of 11 crashes that resulted in fatalities throughout the state. The report went on to state that this was the single deadliest Labor Day weekend since 2015. In that year, 16 people died in crashes during the same stretch of time.
The report breaks down the locations for the fatal crashes, and we know that they took place in the likes of Carroll, Prince William, York, and Fairfax. One of the incidents that happened in Fairfax County is an accident that we reported on in this blog: an individual was struck by a car while crossing the road, and the force of the impact proved fatal.
The Virginia State Police report went on to state that many of the accidents and fatalities were the result of people failing to wear their seatbelts. This, then combined with intoxicated driving, drowsy driving, and simple distraction to cause the 11 deaths.
In addition to the crashes, the Virginia State Police report stated that during a somewhat longer stretch of time (which included Labor Day weekend), from August 17th through September 3rd, they presented 72 individuals with DUI charges, 2,050 people received charges relating to reckless driving, and 8,427 for speeding.
The numbers posted by the Virginia State Police are alarming and should act as a reminder to all of us when we are in our cars. Most car accidents and their following injuries and fatalities can easily be avoided by simply remaining alert and driving carefully. This means to always wear a seatbelt, never drive after consuming alcohol, to obey the posted speed limit, and to keep one's eyes continually on the road.