Once again, Virginia experienced a decline in traffic fatalities ending the year with a reported 750 deaths across the Commonwealth. The fatality count includes the deaths of 70 pedestrians. The 2009 preliminary number is significantly lower than in 2008 in which 821 individuals lost their lives due to traffic crashes.
“The decline in traffic fatalities for the last two years is encouraging, however, with a new year upon us every driver and passenger still needs to make traffic safety an everyday priority, “ said Colonel W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “Virginians should make a resolution this year to buckle up, obey the speed limit and limit their distractions on the road.”
During the New Year’s holiday weekend, a preliminary count indicates three people lost their lives in traffic crashes on Virginia’s roads. According to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), the last time Virginia lost three lives during the New Year’s holiday weekend was in 1996. The 2009-2010 New Year’s four-day statistical counting period began New Year’s Eve and concluded at midnight Jan. 3, 2010. In 2008, during the four-day holiday period, five people were killed in traffic fatalities statewide.
Alcohol was a factor in at least one of the crashes. Of those killed during the 2009-2010 holiday weekend, one involved a pedestrian struck in Chesterfield County. The remaining fatal New Year’s weekend crashes occurred in the counties of Henrico and Spotsylvania. Safety restraints were not used in any of the crashes.
New Year’s Holiday # of days Virginia Fatalities
2009 4 3
2008 4 5
2007 5 14
2006 4 13
2005 3 13
2004 2 7
2003 4 11