Preliminary numbers show that no one died in Oregon traffic crashes over the Christmas holiday period. That was a 30 hour period starting at 6 p.m. Christmas Eve, and lasting until midnight on Christmas.
Lt. Gregg Hastings with the Oregon State Police says it’s only the second Christmas holiday driving period since 1970 in which no one died on the roads. He hopes it’s a sign that drivers are taking safety more seriously.
Hastings says it can be helpful to have the holiday fall mid-week.
“If it’s on the weekend, or closer to the weekend, that holiday period’s going to be a longer length, and we would see more DUI arrests and potentially more traffic crashes occurring, and the possibly the increase of fatalities happening in those crashes,” Hastings said.
But Hastings cautions drivers about the New Year’s holiday. He’s urging everyone to wear a seat belt, and be sure that drivers are alert, well-rested and sober. Last year, 12 people died on Oregon roads over the New Year’s holiday. Nine of those were on a tour bus crash on Interstate 84, east of Pendleton.