The Kansas Highway Patrol is urging motorists and community members to practice caution as Halloween approaches. Caution can be the key to safety as an increasing number of people are out, including pedestrians walking, parents driving their children, and people attending Halloween parties. It is imperative that safety play a role in the fun during the day and evening’s celebrations.
“Halloween brings a wide audience to the roads. There are children and parents traveling and out walking. You also have adults celebrating the holiday, some of whom have had too much to drink,” said Colonel Terry Maple, Superintendent of the Patrol. “Awareness is so important here. Those out walking should watch the roads, double-checking before you cross the streets. Likewise, those out driving need to pay extra attention to the streets, curbs, and sidewalks as you travel. If you’re going to be out drinking, you need to designate a sober driver.”
Five people were killed during crashes over the Halloween weekend last year. Three of those killed were involved in alcohol-related crashes. Overall, there were 725 crashes that injured 236 people during the 78 hour reporting period for Halloween 2008. Alcohol-related crashes accounted for 48 of the total crashes, injuring 24 people. The Patrol has check lanes and saturation patrols scheduled in several communities October 31, the night of Halloween. During a saturation patrol, many troopers, and possibly local police and sheriff’s department officers converge on a specific area, looking for any drivers who are violating Kansas law. A reduction in drinking and driving and taking added safety precautions will help keep the citizens of our state safe on Halloween. This is an exciting time of year for people of all ages and practicing safety will help preserve the fun for all.