Secretary of State Jesse White is reminding people to travel safely during this Memorial Day holiday weekend and to not drink and drive and to not drive while distracted.
“Memorial Day is a day in which we as a nation come together to remember and honor the brave people who died while serving and protecting our country in the U.S. Armed Forces,” said White. “However, Memorial Day weekend also marks the unofficial beginning of summer and I encourage everyone to remember to celebrate this holiday safely and responsibly. Enjoy the weekend, but please do not drink and drive and do not text while driving.”
According to the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT):
* During the 2017 Memorial Day weekend, starting at 6 p.m. on Friday, there were 10 crash fatalities statewide, six of which were alcohol-related, which is 60 percent of the total motor vehicle fatalities.
* During the 2016 Memorial Day weekend, there were 16 crash fatalities, two of which were alcohol-related, which is 12.5 percent of the total motor vehicle fatalities.
* During the 2015 Memorial Day weekend, there were 13 crash fatalities statewide, three of which were alcohol-related, which is approximately 23 percent of the total motor vehicle fatalities. White urges drivers to celebrate the holiday safely by using a sober designated driver.
If drinking is involved, White suggests taking public transportation, using a car service, calling a cab or staying overnight. White also reminds drivers that wearing a safety belt is often the best defense against a drunk or distracted driver. White encourages the driving public to avoid driving while distracted, with a special emphasis on not texting while driving.