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Safe Communities releases 2021 Traffic Fatality Report

| January 21, 2022
Members of Tuscarawas County Safe Communities Coalition are using data from the county's 2021 Fatal Crash Report to guide the group's outreach this year. (Tuscarawas County Health Department)

DOVER (WJER) (Jan. 21, 2022) – Of the 11 deadly crashes on Tuscarawas County’s roadways last year, 64-percent involved some type of impairment, and 78-percent of the people killed that had seatbelts available weren’t wearing them.

That’s according to the 2021 Fatal Crash Report put out by the local traffic safety coalition Safe Communities. Coordinator Kelly Snyder says speed was a factor in 45 percent of the last year’s fatal crashes, which is about the same as last year but significantly higher than before the pandemic. 

“And I don’t know with COVID coming out if there weren’t as many people on the road. Did it make people speed up a little bit? I’m really not sure. It’s definitely something that we’ve been discussing in our coalition meetings, and it’s not just to Tuscarawas County. I’ve heard it being talked about at a state and national level as well.”

Snyder says encouraging people to buckle up, slow down and drive sober are priorities for the coalition here in the new year as is reminding drivers to be on the lookout for motorcycles. She says the county experienced three fatal motorcycle crashes last year with four fatalities on Tuscarawas County’s roadways last year, and all involved other vehicles.

“Come spring as soon as the weather clears, people like to get out and get on their motorcycles, and vehicle drivers aren’t used to seeing the motorcycles. So it’s just being aware that they’re going to be out on the road anytime that we have a little bit of a warmup in the weather.   

Snyder says these reports help guide the coalition’s outreach for the coming year. She says they haven’t been able to get out into the community as much these past couple of years because of the COVID threat, so they’ve been sharing safety messages mostly through media campaigns and material distributions.   

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