DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – There is a lot to celebrate this time of year. With those celebrations could come danger for first responders.
“Officers are injured and killed more often than not, not by a gun or a weapon but by crashes,” said Ohio State Highway Patrol spokesperson, trooper Sheldon Goodrum.
That leaves them on high alert.
“It leaves all officers working and troopers just a little more alert and always cognoscente of what’s going on around us,” said Goodrum.
It’s why OSP is stressing drivers plan ahead if they’ll be drinking. Troopers are focusing their patrols this week on impaired drivers.
Last year’s Christmas week resulted in more than 400 OVI arrests. During that same time, 10 crashes resulted in a 12 deaths. Goodrum says many of those crashes were OVI related and many of those people involved in the crashes were not wearing seat belts.
“It doesn’t hurt to wear your seat belt regardless of where you’re at in the vehicle,” Goodrum said.
Anyone in the driver seat this week need to focus on the road.
“The kids in the back, your cell phone and text messages all of that can wait,” Goodrum said.
At the end of the day, Trooper Goodrum just asks travelers think before they act.
“It’s going to save a lot of heartache and potential tragedy for a lot of people,” Goodrum said.
If you find yourself stranded or broken down on a highway but not in an emergency- you can dial #677 to be connected to the closest trooper post. A dispatcher there can send you help a little quicker than if you’d call a general police dispatch.