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How to stay safe on Montana roadways

Posted at 7:15 PM, Jul 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-04 21:15:17-04

Statistics from the Montana Highway Patrol show July and August are the deadliest months on Montana roads.

In 2019, 49 people lost their lives in Montana crashes.

Here are some safety reminders on how to stay safe on the roadways.

Sergeant Jay Nelson Montana Highway Patrol said, “Right now, we are sitting at 85 fatalities in the state of Montana, just now.

That’s ten percent over what they were last year.

"That’s a huge increase, we look at those four days of the 4th of July, and we average over 130 crashes, four fatalities. Upwards of 35 DUI’s that will occur across the state in those 4-days," said Sergeant Nelson.

Janet Keeny, Supervisor of Highway traffic saftey , told MTN News, "With the fourth of July week coming up we are in the middle of that, and the top three contributing factors to fatalities and serious injuries crashed in Montana are consistently, impaired driving, lack of seatbelts and vehicles leaving the road.”

“As I always tell everybody, it’s the cheapest life insurance you will get by just clicking that seatbelt,” Nelson said.

MHP Troopers will also be looking out for speeders on the highway.

“Montana, is a great place to live it's going to be a beautiful weekend, slow down and enjoy," said Sergeant Nelson.

"Consistently impaired driving is involved in about sixty percent of fatal crashes,” Keeny said.

If you do happen to see someone driving that you think maybe impaired call 911.

“Give the description of the vehicle, if they can give a license plate. Never put yourself in danger. Meaning is someone is traveling in an erratic manner don’t try and copy them and follow them where they are going," Sergeant Nelson said.

And if you happen to have a little too many drinks he suggests to leave your car at the bar, don’t drink and drive, don’t endanger yourself or others.

Using a ride share companies is another option or ask your bartender if the bar participates in a home free program.