GSP examines fatal wreck rate - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

GSP examines fatal wreck rate

September 15, 2006

Thomas County -- Three deadly crashes in the Thomasville area in the last week caused concern among the Georgia State Patrol. With 20 fatalities in that area already this year, troopers plan to monitor driver's habits closely.

Two fatalities this week in Thomas County both attributed to driver error have the Georgia State Patrol warning drivers. "We want them to know we're out there and when we're out there being seen, we want them to slow down and even when we're not being seen, we want them to obey the traffic laws," says GSP Thomasville Post Commander Sgt. Ronald Warren.

In the last two years fatality rates in the four county area serviced by the Thomasville GSP have been among the highest in the state. So far this year there have been 20 fatalities compared to 12 at the Albany Post and 13 at the Valdosta Post.

"That is somewhat high, we're, trying to take as many precautionary steps as what we can to help reduce that by conducting concentrated patrols in each of our counties that we work," said Warren.

That's why the GSP may stop you if you're driving erratically or distracted. Warren, "A lot of folks currently today, get on the cell phone, they just find so many things to distract them while they're driving and that's just one of the thing we reinforce to the troopers is to be observant."

While the GSP can't pinpoint one cause for the fatality increase. Warren, "Sometimes there are many factors to consider which do add up to a fatality crash or serious injury." They do encourage drivers to be more vigilant in slowing down, buckling up, and tuning out the distractions.  

The Thomasville Post handled 26 fatal crashes in 2005 and 33 fatal crashes the year before that.

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