DeWine announces July 2020 as deadliest driving month since 2007
The governor urges drivers to be more careful on the roads.
TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - Distracted driving and speed were the main factors Governor Mike DeWine says lead to July 2020 being the deadliest month for driving in Ohio since 2007 at his statewide address Tuesday afternoon. Now, the governor says extra steps need to be taken by the state, and by motorists, to improve traffic safety.
“A total of 154 of our fellow citizens died. That certainly is incredibly sad,” said DeWine.
Data from the Ohio State Highway Patrol shows there were 122 people killed in August this year, also mentioning motorcyclists deaths were up over 52% than in 2019.
“Research by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 94% of serious crashes in the country are due to driver error,” stated DeWine. “So obviously the vast majority of these are preventable.”
The governor also pleaded with the General Assembly to move on the “Hands Free Ohio” bill that was introduced back in February to crack down on distracted driving.
The bill would make using a device like a cell phone while driving a primary offense in Ohio. Currently, it is a secondary offense.
Lt. Shawn Robinson of the Toledo Post explains how officers currently enforce the law.
“You have to be stopped for a speeding violation, you run a red light, rolled through a stop sign, (etc.) for it to be another infraction committed for the distracted driving to take place,” says Lt. Robinson.
DeWine declared he would sign an executive order to create the Ohio Traffic Safety Council to monitor all statewide driving initiatives.
The Ohio State Highway Patrol will have more officers out on the roads looking for impaired driving over Labor Day Weekend.
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