PIKE COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Officials say Pike County roads are safer today than they have been in at least five years.
Pike County has now lost its title as having the most dangerous roads in the state, dropping to sixth place. Officials say there is still much room for improvement and their goal is to get Pike County out of the top 25.
Sara George with Highway District 12 and a member of the Pike County Highway Safety Team says, "It is unconscionable that we've let it get to this point."
It is something that the safety team has been working hard to fix and new statistics are showing some improvement. Sara George explains, "From 2011 to 2012 amount of crashes fell 10%, that may not sound like a lot but in raw numbers that is 198 fewer crashes than the year before and that's huge!"
Team members say if drivers act responsibly, the rates will continue to fall.
Pike County Attorney and team member Keith Hall says, "We want to encourage people to abide by the rules and make people a little bit fearful, regretful if they intentionally violate the rules."
Members of the safety team say they go by the 5 E's of road safety; engineering, enforcement, education, emergency response...and they say the last 'e' is the most important aspect of road safety. George explains, "Each of us has to partner with the other 4 E's, each of us has to realize it is our responsibility to be the safest drivers we can be or stats aren't going to change consistently."
Officials say it will take both changes in behavior and attitude, George says "If we are going to get anywhere near zero fatalities on our roads in Pike County it is up to us, not somebody else."
Officials say the biggest cause for crashes in Pike County is distracted driving, which leads to 44% crashes, followed by aggressive driving and speeding.