unnamed2GALLIPOLIS/POMEROY – September has been designated as Safe Driving Awareness Month in Ohio, and the Ohio State Highway Patrol is reminding motorists to do their part in keeping roadways safe by driving defensively, while never driving distracted or impaired.

The Patrol is also encouraging motorists to always buckle up. There is simply no disputing that wearing a safety belt can save your life. Additionally, motorists should take their time and be knowledgeable of all traffic safety laws.

“By devoting their full attention to the road, motorists can reduce their risk of getting into a crash,” said Lt. Max Norris, Gallipolis Post Commander. “We need all motorists to practice safe driving habits to make the roadways safe all across Ohio.”

From 2009-2013, an average of 290,556 motor vehicle crashes occurred on Ohio’s public roadways. Over 900 involved fatalities with 1,046 people being killed.

Last year was the first in Ohio’s history recording fewer than 1,000 fatalities in a year, with 990 people killed in 918 motor vehicle crashes.

September was designated by Senate bill 294, signed by Governor John Kasich in June 2014 to honor Maria Tiberi and other victims of motor vehicle crashes. Maria Tiberi was a 21 year old college student who died in a distracted driving crash in September 2013. She is the daughter of Columbus television sports anchor, Dom Tiberi.

To view the statistical analysis regarding our safe driving awareness month visit http://www.statepatrol.ohio.gov/doc/SafeDriving_Bulletin_2014.pdf

As always, the Patrol asks drivers to call #677 to report impaired drivers or drug activity.