LOUISIANA — During the Thanksgiving holiday week, Louisiana State Police investigated thirteen fatal crashes that resulted in fourteen deaths across the state. Seven of the fourteen people killed were not wearing seat belts and two of the crashes involved driver impairment. Troopers are urging motorists to abide by the laws of driving sober and properly wearing seat belts.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2011 the national seat belt usage rate was 84 percent. Louisiana was below that average at 77.7 percent.
Louisiana law requires every occupant, regardless of seating position, to be properly restrained. Seat belts significantly reduce injuries and fatalities when worn properly and they ensure that the person remains inside the vehicle.
In 2011, over 42 percent of Louisiana’s motor vehicle fatalities were the result of driver impairment. Drivers should put a plan in place prior to consuming alcohol because judgment is the first thing that is affected. Get a sober driver, call a taxi or simply do not drive. Please ensure that you get to your destination safely.
The following is a list of fatal crashes by Troop area:
Troop A (Baton Rouge): One crash resulting in one death. Excessive speed is a factor.
Troop B (New Orleans): NONE
Troop C (Houma / Thibodeaux): NONE
Troop D (Lake Charles): One crash resulting in two deaths. Seat belts were not used and chemical tests for impairment are pending.
Troop E (Alexandria): One crash resulting in one death. Seat belts were not used.
Troop F (Monroe): Two crashes resulting in two deaths, one of which was a pedestrian. Seat belts were not used and one crash involved impairment.
Troop G (Shreveport): NONE
Troop I (Lafayette): Six crashes resulting in six deaths, one was a pedestrian and one was a motorcycle. Three of the six crashes involved lack of seat belt usage and one impaired driver.
Troop L (Mandeville): Two crashes resulting in two deaths. One of the crashes involved an impaired driver.
Making the right decision can often mean the difference between life and death. Contact the Louisiana State Police by dialing *LSP or (*577) on your cell phone to report impaired drivers and dangerous roadway conditions.