RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — Virginia State Police announced on Thursday that 14 people lost their lives in traffic crashes during Memorial Day Weekend in the Commonwealth. This is nearly double the deaths from the same period in 2020.
Police say eight of those who died were not wearing their seatbelt, while two were riding motorcycles. One of the fatal motorcycle crashes occurred in Virginia Beach, while two of the other fatalities occurred in Virginia Beach and Northampton County.
“I understand that most Virginians have been driving less in the past year. They may be feeling a bit green in the driver seat and their patience may be a bit short,” said Colonel Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “But the rules of the road haven’t changed and safety on the roadways should be of paramount concern to everyone. This holiday weekend, as well as the entire year so far, have seen far too many people lose their lives on Virginia’s highways. Speeding, reckless driving and distractions are leading to tragedy.”
This year, Memorial Day also coincided with the annual “Click It or Ticket” campaign. The campaign ran from 12:01 a.m. on May 24 through midnight on May 31. During this time, Virginia Troopers cited 5,553 speeders, 1,818 reckless drivers and 749 people for seatbelt violations.
They also arrested 79 impaired drivers.