No traffic fatalities during New Year holiday, state says

Written by Observer staff reports January 02, 2014 02:08 pm

No traffic fatalities were reported in Oregon during the 30-hour New Year's holiday reporting period, according to preliminary information.

If this statistic holds true, this will be the third time since 1970 for no traffic fatalities during this major holiday period. The period began at 6 p.m. Dec. 31 and extended through 11:59 p.m. Jan. 1.

According to Oregon Department of Transportation' Fatality Analysis Reporting System, since 1970 there were no fatalities reported in 2003 (30 hour period) and 2010 (78 hour period). Reporting periods may be different lengths depending on what day of the week the holiday falls on. The previous two New Year's holiday reporting periods recorded a total of 22 traffic fatalities (12 deaths in 2013 and 10 deaths in 2012). Last year's reported fatalities included 9 deaths from the December fatal tour bus crash east of Pendleton. 

Oregon State Police and local law enforcement agencies participated in a national enforcement effort since Dec. 13 to discourage impaired driving and prevent alcohol-related incidents along our roads. During the 30-hour reporting period for the New Year's holiday OSP troopers reported 29 DUII arrests, of which 22 DUII arrests were on Jan. 1.

Last year, OSP troopers during a 102-hour reporting period recorded 78 DUII arrests of which 31 occurred on Jan. 1, 2013. 

In addition to enhanced DUII enforcement efforts, OSP troopers during traffic stops arrested 13 people on outstanding misdemeanor and felony arrest warrants.