Troopers report 8 fatalities over Thanksgiving travel period

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. – As holiday travel numbers continue to reflect pre-pandemic numbers, Troopers within the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency’s (ALEA) Highway Patrol Division investigated eight traffic-related fatalities while patrolling the roadways during this year’s official five-day travel period. 

“I would like to offer my sincere condolences to the families of the eight individuals who tragically lost their lives during the holiday travel period. No one should have to endure the heart-wrenching notification from an ALEA Trooper that their loved one is not returning home,” ALEA Secretary Hal Taylor said. “Throughout the holidays, traffic congestion is expected to continue, and it is imperative to exercise patience and good judgement behind the wheel. We all must do our part to ensure we continue to make Alabama roadways safer for all who travel them.” 

The deadly crashes occurred in Cleburne, Dallas, Elmore, Lee, Mobile and Pike counties between 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 23, and midnight Sunday, Nov. 27, and included one motorcyclist. Four of the seven individuals traveling in vehicles equipped with seat belts were not buckled up at the time of their crashes. 

Compared to previous years, ALEA Troopers investigated seven traffic-related fatalities in 2021, eight in 2020 and 11 in 2019 during the same holiday travel period. These figures do not include crashes that were investigated by local law enforcement departments. 

Colonel Jimmy Helms, the director of ALEA’s Department of Public Safety, said, “Although statistics change, the causes of these crashes remain the same. Impairment, speeding, distractions and lack of seat belts are all common factors of deadly crashes in our state. Our top priority is to promote public safety by enforcing Alabama’s traffic laws in order to reduce crashes and save lives. We continue to urge everyone to ‘save room for safety’ this holiday season and avoid dangerous driving behaviors.” 

ALEA Troopers will continue to work in conjunction with local law enforcement agencies to boost patrols and focus on safety initiatives to inform and educate the public on risky driving behaviors ahead of Christmas and New Year’s. 

For seasonal safety tips, please visit www.alea.gov.