Summer 2019 remains deadly on Montana highways

HELENA – Labor Day weekend marks the end of the 100 deadliest days on Montana roads, and as the summer winds down, travelers still need to remember that every day can be a deadly day on the roads.  

According to the Montana Department of Transportation, as of August 26th, 122 people have died this year and the top reasons why remain consistent: impaired driving, lack of seat belts, and vehicles leaving the road. This year Montana has seen a significant increase in deaths from crashes in town and city areas. With these numbers in mind, MDT will be working with local law enforcement and Montana Highway Patrol to make the holiday safer which continues through Tuesday.  

“We do our best to engineer and maintain safe roadways,” says Janet Kenny the Supervisor of the State Highway Traffic Safety Section for MDT. “We also partner with funding law enforcement, including the highway patrol, so there can be extra officers out on the roads during this busy time frame. Specifically concentrating on drunk driving.”  

MDT says, busy holiday weekends can be especially risky with the increased number of vehicles on the road and end of the summer celebrations. Over the last 10 years, a total of 43 people died over the Labor Day holiday, and more than half of the lives lost involved an impaired driver.  

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, age can be a particularly risky factor over the Labor Day weekend. Nationally drivers between the ages of 18 and 34 who were killed in crashes over the Labor Day Holiday period in 2017, 42% of them were drunk.  

MDT reminds drivers to put safety first and remember that every day can be a deadly day on the road.  

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