Fatal Crashes Spike in Delaware

 

Delaware– The Delaware State Police have seen a recent spike in fatal crashes across the entire state.  In conjunction with the Delaware Office of Highways Safety, we are working together to provide our citizens with a few traffic safety reminders.

The majority of fatal crashes are attributed to some form of distracted driving.  This involves the driver failing to provide the proper time and attention to the roadway and to the task of driving.  Other high-risk behaviors of motorists include impaired driving, speeding, unsafe driving behaviors including the use of electronic devices and the failure of motorists and passengers alike to wear seat belts.

Traffic Safety Tips:

Limit distractionsUsing your cell phone, texting, and fiddling with the radio or GPS should all be done when you are at a complete stop or avoided altogether.  Give 100% of your attention to the road.

Walk Smart: Distracted walking, wearing dark clothing, and walking under the influence are common factors in pedestrian crashes in Delaware. Wear bright clothing, carry a flashlight, keep your head up and keep your eyes on the road and surrounding areas. Catch a cab or rideshare lift, or have a designated driver take you home. Walking under impairment is never worth the risk.

Slow Down:  Reducing speeds and/or maintaining safer speeds.  Avoid the fast lane if possible.  If you are in the center or far-right lanes, you are more able to maneuver away from a potentially dangerous situation than if you are in the fast lane.

Be AttentiveNever just assume that a driver is going to stop or turn. It’s better to assume they may not!  For example, when going through a red light, still look both ways to check if anyone is going to run the light.  Not only do drunk drivers often run red lights, but so do distracted drivers.

Driving Under the Influence: Whether it be driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, impaired driving is a crime.  Before drinking, please designate a sober driver and give that person your keys. If you’re impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation so you are sure to get home safely.

Wear Your Seatbelt: One of the safest choices drivers and passengers can make is to buckle up. Understand the potentially fatal consequences of not wearing a seat belt and learn what you can do to make sure you and your family are properly buckled up every time.

“The Office of Highway Safety is currently running our pedestrian, occupant protection, and distracted driving campaigns and enforcements in every county. We want the public to be aware of actions they can take to protect themselves on Delaware roadways. October is Pedestrian Safety Month. Please walk bright and walk smartly by wearing bright clothes, carrying a flashlight, and being aware when crossing Delaware’s busy roads,” Cynthia Cavett, Marketing Specialist II and Public Information Officer, Delaware Office of Highway Safety.

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more information, please visit ohs.delaware.gov, or visit us on Facebook (@HighwaysafetyDE), Twitter (@HighwaysafetyDE) and Instagram (HighwaysafetyDE).

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MEDIA CONTACTS:
Cynthia Cavett, Marketing Specialist II & Public Information Officer
Delaware Office of Highway Safety
Cynthia.Cavett@Delaware.Gov
302-744-2743

About the Delaware Office of Highway Safety
The Office of Highway Safety (OHS) is committed to improving the safety of Delaware’s motoring public by focusing on behavioral traffic safety issues such as impaired driving, seat belt use, speeding, child passenger safety, pedestrian and bicycle safety, motorcycle safety, and teen driving issues. FAQs can be found at ArriveAliveDE.com.


Keep Children Safe on Halloween

DOVER  – Halloween is one of the most dangerous days of the year for pedestrians, according to Safe Kids Worldwide. Children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a car and killed on Halloween than on any other day of the year. In Delaware, 23 pedestrians of all ages have died through Oct. 14 of this year, up more than 40 percent over the same point last year, according to the Delaware Office of Highway Safety.

The Safe Kids Delaware Coalition reminds parents to take precautions to keep their children safe while trick-or-treating:
• Cross the street at corners and use crosswalks. Obey traffic signals and make sure vehicles are stopping before crossing.

• Look left, right, and left again when crossing. Keep looking as you cross.

• Put electronic devices down and keep heads up. Walk (do not run) across the street.

• Teach children to make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.

• Always walk on sidewalks or paths. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible. Children should walk on direct routes with the fewest street crossings.

• Watch for cars that are turning or backing up. Teach children to never dart out into the street or cross between parked cars.

Trick or Treat with an Adult
Children under the age of 12 should not be alone at night without adult supervision. If kids are mature enough to be out without supervision, remind them to stick to familiar, well-lit areas and to trick-or-treat in groups. While some cities and municipalities may set specific hours for trick or treating, Delaware does not have uniform trick or treat hours.

Keep Costumes Creative and Safe
• Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers and, if possible, choose light colors.

• Choose face paint and makeup whenever possible instead of masks, which can obstruct a child’s vision.

• Have kids carry glow sticks or flashlights to help them see and be seen by drivers.

• When selecting a costume, make sure it is the right size to prevent trips and falls.

The Safe Kids Delaware Coalition, an affiliate of SAFE KIDS Worldwide®, is a nonprofit organization established in 1989, comprised of volunteers dedicated to reducing unintentional childhood injury in children from birth to age 14. The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) serves as the lead agency for Safe Kids Delaware.

For more safety tips on topics for children, visit https://www.safekids.org/. For more information about Safe Kids Delaware, visit: https://www.dhss.delaware.gov/dph/ems/safekids.html.

A person who is deaf, hard-of-hearing, deaf-blind or speech-disabled can call the DPH phone number above by using TTY services. Dial 7-1-1 or 800-232-5460 to type your conversation to a relay operator, who reads your conversation to a hearing person at DPH. The relay operator types the hearing person’s spoken words back to the TTY user. To learn more about TTY availability in Delaware, visit http://delawarerelay.com.

The Delaware Department of Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware’s citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations. DPH, a division of DHSS, urges Delawareans to make healthier choices with the 5-2-1 Almost None campaign: eat 5 or more fruits and vegetables each day, have no more than 2 hours of recreational screen time each day (includes TV, computer, gaming), get 1 or more hours of physical activity each day, and drink almost no sugary beverages.


Office of Highway Safety Reactivates Grassroots Initiative to Promote Pedestrian Safety Month in October

Cooperative statewide effort to reduce pedestrian

deaths and encourage safe walking habits

WILMINGTON, Del. (October 14, 2019) – In honor of Pedestrian Safety Month to meaningfully reduce pedestrian deaths across the state, Delaware Office of Highway Safety (OHS) is bringing back its grassroots pedestrian safety initiative statewide. From Monday, October 7 through Sunday, October 20, pedestrian street teams will be deployed on DART buses throughout the state with routes that travel corridors with higher occurrences of pedestrian crashes and fatalities. These street teams will educate Delawareans on safe walking habits and hand out reflectors for use.

“Data continues to show that October is the deadliest month related to crashes occurring in Delaware, with the highest occurrences of pedestrian fatalities and injuries. In addition, pedestrian crashes peak around evening rush hour from 5 to 8 p.m. This is precisely why we have decided to bring back our grassroots initiative to stress the importance of safe walking habits especially during this time frame,” said Kimberly Chesser, Director, Delaware Office of Highway Safety. “We would like to thank DART for partnering with us on such an important initiative, helping to make sure that our riders and pedestrians Walk Smart.”

Common factors in pedestrian crashes involve individuals being under the influence, distracted walking, wearing dark-colored clothing, and crossing outside of crosswalks on busy roads like Kirkwood Highway (Rt 2), DuPont Highway (US 13), and Pulaski Highway (US 40).

“OHS will continue to do its part to promote that pedestrians Walk Smart, and hope each person helps us spread our message to ensure that pedestrians arrive safely,” said Richard Klepner, Deputy Director and Pedestrian Safety Coordinator, Delaware Office of Highway Safety.

For more information, please visit ohs.delaware.gov, or visit us on Facebook (@HighwaysafetyDE), Twitter (@HighwaysafetyDE) and Instagram (HighwaysafetyDE).

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DE OHS logo

About the Delaware Office of Highway Safety
The Office of Highway Safety (OHS) is committed to improving the safety of Delaware’s motoring public by focusing on behavioral traffic safety issues such as impaired driving, seat belt use, speeding, child passenger safety, pedestrian and bicycle safety, motorcycle safety, and teen driving issues. FAQs can be found at ArriveAliveDE.com.


The Increased Fight to Prevent Pedestrian Deaths

Dover – The Delaware Office of Highway Safety (OHS) is pleased to announce an increase in pedestrian safety initiatives that began November 3rd. These initiatives include outreach to the pedestrian population, enforcement of pedestrian safety laws, placement of paid media and a variety of public relations efforts. Full details of the campaign were unveiled on Friday, November 13, 2015, during a press event outside the Emergency Department at Christiana Care Health System’s Christiana Hospital. Speakers included the Director of the Office of Highway Safety, the Colonel of the Delaware State Police, the Safety Programs Manager for DelDOT, and the Associate Medical Director for the Christiana Care Trauma Program.

To date, Delaware has lost 30 pedestrians on roadways across the state. The total number of pedestrians lost in 2014 was 27. Given that many of these crashes occurred late in the year, the Office of Highway Safety and its partners announced a variety of initiatives that are intended to keep additional pedestrian crashes at a minimum.

Outreach to the pedestrian population started on November 3rd, with Delaware State Police Troop 2 conducting a special project involving high visibility education and enforcement along US Route 13 from the Route 13/40 split to I-295. This project is part of a pilot program initiated by the International Association of Police Chiefs (IACP) and funded by OHS. The initiative began with outreach to educate pedestrians about how to make walking a safer mode of transportation. Two weeks of education patrols include teams of two Troopers intercepting pedestrians who may be breaking the State’s pedestrian safety laws. Following the education patrols, Troopers will conduct one week of enforcement patrols, targeting pedestrian safety violations.

During Troop 2’s special project, the following promotion will be conducted:
• Safety messages on DelDOT’s variable message boards
• Social media announcements and press releases
• Public Service Announcement on Traffic Watch radio programs

In addition to the Troop 2 project, OHS began funding outreach patrols on November 5th to additional law enforcement agencies including Dover Police, Elsmere Police, Laurel Police, Milford Police, Newark Police, Seaford Police, Smyrna Police, Wilmington Police, and Delaware State Police Troops 2, 3 and 6. These outreach patrols will run through December 12th and will be followed with one week of enforcement patrols that conclude on December 19th. Officers working both initiatives will provide pedestrians literature that includes safe walking tips and a small flashlight to increase their visibility in low-light or dark conditions.

OHS’s media and public relations component to improve pedestrian safety will include the following:
• Press releases and social media announcements
• Special announcements on the University of Delaware’s Facebook page
• Signage at bus shelters in New Castle County, focusing on the Route 13/40 corridor, Kirkwood Highway, and Limestone Road
• Bus wraps on DART buses in New Castle County
• Signage at Dover Mall and Concord Mall
• Signage at Tanger Outlets in Rehoboth Beach
• Sidewalk clings within the City of Dover
• A pedestrian safety educational checkpoint along the Route 13/40 corridor
• Flyers for law enforcement to hand out during education/outreach patrols
• Small flashlights for pedestrians
• Posters placed with businesses and apartment complexes along the Route 13/40 corridor
• Marquee messaging along the Route 13/40 corridor

OHS reminds pedestrians and motorists that the holiday season truly is the most dangerous time of the year on Delaware roadways. Pedestrians are reminded to cross only in marked crosswalks or at intersections with traffic signals; if walking at night, carry a flashlight or wear reflective clothing; use sidewalks whenever possible; be patient – wait for cars to stop before starting to cross; and finally, do not walk under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Be as visible as you possibly can. When driving, always anticipate pedestrians, and plan extra time in your travel schedule to allow them time to cross. Vigilance is essential. And remember, always follow the posted speeds and never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.


Increased Pedestrian Safety Initiatives Throughout November & December

Dover – The Delaware Office of Highway Safety (OHS) is pleased to announce an increase in pedestrian safety initiatives that began on November 3rd. These initiatives include outreach to the pedestrian population, enforcement of pedestrian safety laws, placement of paid media and a variety of public relations efforts.

Outreach to the pedestrian population began on November 3rd, with Delaware State Police Troop 2 conducting a special project that involved high visibility education and enforcement along US Route 13 from the Route 13/40 split to I-295. This project was part of a pilot program initiated by the International Association of Police Chiefs (IACP) and funded by OHS. DSP will conduct two weeks of outreach and follow with one week of enforcement patrols, citing those breaking pedestrian safety laws. This project will conclude on November 21st.

In addition, OHS is funding outreach and education patrols, which began November 5th. Participating agencies include Dover Police, Elsmere Police, Laurel Police, Milford Police, Newark Police, Seaford Police, Smyrna Police, Wilmington Police, and Delaware State Police Troops 2, 3 and 6. Outreach patrols will run through December 12th and will be followed with one week of enforcement patrols that conclude on December 19th. Officers will provide pedestrians with literature that includes safe walking tips and a small flashlight to increase pedestrians’ visibility in low-light or dark conditions.

OHS reminds both pedestrians and the motoring public to be extra vigilant as the holiday season approaches. Historically, it’s been the most dangerous time of the year to be a pedestrian. If you are walking cross only in crosswalks or at intersections with traffic signals; if walking at night, carry a flashlight or wear reflective clothing; use sidewalks whenever possible; be patient – wait for cars to stop before stepping into the roadway; and finally, do not walk under the influence of drugs or alcohol. When driving, always anticipate pedestrians. Obey the posted speeds, be vigilant, and never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.