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100 Deadliest Days Of Summer Begins On Utah Roads

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The Memorial Day weekend kicks off what is known as the 100 deadliest days on Utah’s roadways, but the Utah Department of Transportation and the Utah Highway Patrol are trying to slowly reverse that trend.

While there are more crashes on Utah’s roads during the winter, there are significantly more fatalities during the time period between Memorial Day and Labor Day.

“In the summer months you have more people out on the roads, conditions are ideal for going freeway speeds and some people are exceeding the freeway speeds and that’s where you see a lot of the serious crashes,” John Gleason says.

He’s the public information officer for the Utah Department of Transportation. He says UDOT workers do a lot to try to make sure the roads are as safe as possible, but ultimately drivers are responsible for avoiding what he calls the five deadly behaviors.

“We have aggressive driving, distracted driving, drowsy driving, impaired driving, and the number one killer on the roads is people not buckling up, not wearing their seatbelts,” he says.

Sgt. Todd Royce of the Utah Highway Patrol says changing those behaviors is one of the main goals officers have when they pull people over.

“You know we see crashes quite often where the vehicle will roll, the cab of the vehicle will stay pretty intact and people should walk away from these crashes," Royce says. "And we’ve got a fatal that we have to go knock on somebody’s door and let them know that a husband, a wife, a spouse, a child isn’t coming home that day.”

Royce says the highway patrol increases enforcement during the next few months and will have more than 1000 extra shifts just to patrol for drunk drivers. 

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