Relatively speaking, it’s been a safer start to 2018 than it was across the state at this same time last year. The Highway Patrol reports that there have been 173 fatalities so far, combining vehicle deaths with drowning and boating-related deaths. At the same time last year, there had been 191 deaths from those three categories. Vehicle fatalities are down from 188 to 169. There have been three drowning deaths so far, exactly the same number from this date in 2017.