Nine die statewide in Memorial Day crashes

Virginia State Police counted nine people dead statewide from traffic accidents over the Memorial Day weekend, a slight increase over 2014.

The deaths were recorded between 12:01 a.m. Friday and midnight Monday in Albermarle, Campbell, Franklin, Page, Prince George, Prince William, and Rockingham counties and Roanoke. Page County was the scene of a double fatality.

Eight people lost their lives during the same period in 2014; nine died in 2013 and 11 in 2012.

State police superintendent Col. W. Steven Flaherty urged drivers to buckle their seat belts, avoid alcohol and distractions, obey the speed limit and drive defensively.

“They are safety messages which must be repeated because following the rules of the road can save lives,” Flaherty said.

The state police were called to the scene of 768 traffic crashes around Virginia during the holiday weekend. Other state police data for the four-day period include 13,573 speeding citations; 3,408 reckless driving charges; 1,300 seat belt violations and 398 tickets to adults for failing to properly secure infants and children.

The holiday weekend traffic enforcement was part of the larger 2015 Click It or Ticket It campaign that began on May 18 and continues through Sunday. The effort focuses on high visibility traffic law enforcement with an emphasis on seat belt and child safety seat laws