Rose White, spokeswoman for AAA-Nebraska, says the number of motorists killed just reached a significant number.
White says, “Highway fatalities on Nebraska roadways have climbed to 200, relecting an increase of 10% compared to the fatalities reported for the same period for the previous four years.”
The number of people on motorcycles who are dying in crashes statewide is even more distressing.
“Motorcycle fatalities are up 33% percent compared to the average for the years 2011 through 2014, with 26 deaths reported so far this year,” White says. “This is the highest number of motorcycle fatalities reported since 1987, when 31 deaths occurred.”
The number of people on roadsides or at intersections who are being hit and killed this year is also alarming, according to White.
“Pedestrian deaths are up 60% with 16 deaths reported so far this year and this is the highest number since 2000, when 20 pedestrians were killed and nearly 500 injured,” White says. “Bicyclist fatalities have also risen with four fatalities this year, which is the highest level since 2001.”
Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s are three of the busiest and deadliest holidays of the year to be on the road, with Thanksgiving arriving next Thursday.
“With a large number of people heading out on the roadways for the Thanksgiving holiday, we do anticipate, tragically, there will be many people killed or injured in traffic crashes,” White says. “Be aware of your surroundings, pay attention, avoid all distractions, and make certain you and every passenger in your vehicle is buckled up.”
Cell phones remain one of the biggest distractions for drivers. She suggests you shut your phone off every time you get behind the wheel.