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OFFICIAL KENTUCKY STATE
POLICE PRESS RELEASE

For More Information Contact:
Capt. David Jude
(502) 782-1780

KSP Safe Driving Tips Provide "Gift Of Life" For Christmas Holiday Travel

Date of News Release: 12/14/2007

(FRANKFORT, Ky.) - Whether driving across town or across the state, the Kentucky State Police are advising motorists to exercise added caution and flexibility on the highway during the Christmas holiday season.

"Holiday travel should always be taken seriously," advises Kentucky State Police Commissioner Rodney Brewer. "Don't let the joys of the season be ruined by an injury or fatality in a vehicle crash or an impaired driving arrest. Give the gift of life to yourself, your family and others during this special time of the season."

In 2006, more than 50 million motorists throughout the country made trips of more than 50 miles during the Christmas-New Year's holiday. Despite higher costs for gasoline this year, KSP expects highway travel through and within the state to match or exceed last year's level resulting in crowded conditions that could potentially create hazardous conditions. Nine people lost their lives in nine crashes on Kentucky roadways during last year's three-day Christmas holiday. Eight of the fatalities were not wearing seat belts and two were the result of alcohol-related crashes.

In order to save lives, the Kentucky State Police will be boosting its road patrols and operating safety checkpoints statewide beginning at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 21 and ending at 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 25. For maximum effectiveness, troopers will coordinate enforcement activities with local police and sheriff's offices to target high-risk areas and use radar and laser equipment as well as passive alcohol sensors to assist their efforts.

KSP will also be participating in Operation CARE (Combined Accident Reduction Effort) from Dec. 21 through Dec. 23, a nationwide program designed to reduce fatalities on interstate highways and parkways by concentrating on speeding, impaired driving and failure to use seat belts.

"These three factors significantly affect highway fatality rates," says Brewer. "Troopers will be aggressively enforcing the law to save lives. Those who endanger themselves and others should know they will face serious consequences."

According to Capt. Tim Lucas, commander of the KSP Highway Safety Branch, Kentucky has recorded 814 highway fatalities through Dec. 13 of this year. Three-hundred-and-seventy deaths were motor vehicle occupants who were not wearing seat belts. Alcohol-related crashes have caused 193 deaths during the same time period.

"Safe driving requires good decision-making and good risk management," says Lucas. "It is serious business. Crashes are life-changing events that often have permanent consequences. And they don't always happen to the other guy. It could be you."

To boost your chances of surviving holiday road travel, KSP offers the following tips:

Citizens can contribute to highway safety during the holiday period by reporting erratic, impaired or speeding drivers to the KSP toll-free hotline at 1-800-222-5555 (in the state of Kentucky only, does not work out of state). Callers will remain anonymous and should give a description of the vehicle, location, direction of travel and license number, if possible.


Contact Information for the Kentucky State Police

Kentucky State Police
919 Versailles Road | Frankfort, KY 40601
502-782-1800

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