Though the overall number of crashes in February and March of this year is lower than the same two months last year, the number of wrecks involving impaired drivers is up, Delaware State Police said.
Since March 12, Delaware has been under a state of emergency, which has mandated that many people stay home. As a result, state police said the agency "anticipated to have a significant decline" in the number of crashes and fatalities compared to the previous year.
While it has seen some decline, the percentage of crashes involving impairment has increased, police said.
The number of pedestrian, motorcycle and passenger vehicle fatalities is also up. The only number that has not increased is bicycle-related fatalities.
Since the start of the year, Delaware has had 23 fatal crashes resulting in 24 deaths. Of those 23 fatal crashes, two were motorcycle-related and eight were pedestrian-related.
In light of those numbers, state police are asking people to drive sober and slow down.
“Speed is the biggest determinant of serious injury and fatalities, especially for those who are most vulnerable like pedestrians and bicyclists as well as first responders, tow truck drivers and construction and utility workers often on the shoulders of our roads,” said Ken Grant, Public and Government Affairs Manager for AAA Mid-Atlantic.
“Motorist reaction times — which is about one second for most drivers — don’t speed up just because they go faster.”