Despite a nasty winter storm that hit a large part of the state on Sunday, the Highway Patrol says this year’s Thanksgiving holiday period was still much safer overall than last year’s. The patrol says they handled 587 crashes with 108 injuries between 6pm last Wednesday and 11:59 Sunday night. There were nine fatalities statewide. Last year, there were more than 1300 crashes with 555 injuries and 17 fatalities. The weather did impact this year’s numbers, though. In a five-and-a-half hour span Sunday, Troop F alone responded to 113 weather-related calls, including 25 crashes and 50 slide-offs.
Not only were traffic crashes and fatalities down during the Thanksgiving holiday period this year, but so were arrests of people driving while impaired. According to statistics from the Highway Patrol, there were 86 arrests for DWI this year. Troopers arrested another 67 people on drug-related charges. Both of those numbers are down compared to 2017, when the patrol made 127 DWI arrests and 117 drug arrests.