Lower Death Toll On State Roads; Police Credit Seat-Belt Law

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - The death toll on Kentucky's highways reached a six-year low last year, which police attribute partly to the state's tougher seat-belt law.

State police said Wednesday that 852 people died in traffic crashes across Kentucky in 2007, according to preliminary statistics. The death count is down by 61 from 2006.

The decline coincided with the first full year for Kentucky's primary seat-belt law, which allows police officers to stop motorists for not buckling up.

The lower toll also came in a year when the speed limit was raised to 70 mph on rural stretches of interstate highways and parkways. State police Lieutenant Phil Crumpton says the higher speed limit had little impact because most traffic crashes occur on secondary roads with lower speed limits.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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  • by Happy Kentuckians! Location: Lexington on Jan 2, 2008 at 03:01 PM
    Kudos to the combined efforts of the Kentucky State Police, KY Department of Transportation Safety, Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement, Governor's Coalition for Highway Safety, Drive Smart Kentucky Program, and all the local law enforcement agencies who worked together with a multi-pronged approach to reduce the fatality rates in KY for the past couple of years. You ALL should be credited for a job well done and keep up the good work of working together to get the job done. For so long the agencies didn't work together and the people of Kentucky suffered. It's good to see that all the elements must be in the right place now because the statistics prove it.
  • by Earl Location: Frankfort on Jan 2, 2008 at 02:58 PM
    Well, I'm glad to finally get a quote from KSP saying that the higher speed limit on interstates doesn't increase death tolls because most fatalities happen on secondary roads. People of Kentucky, do not forget who it was that lobbied our legislature since 1996 to keep them from raising the speed limit...it was the Kentucky State Police who swore that the higher speed limit would lead to higher death rates if it were raised. Finally they raised it this year with KSP objecting, and the rate STILL went down. Go figure, we could've been driving 70 or 75 on Interstates 10 year ago when everyone else around us was, but they had us so convinced that there would be bodies everywhere, when statistics from other states showed that it was never true.


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