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OSHP reports decline in Eastern Ohio OVI arrests during the Labor Day weekend

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — There was a slight decrease in OVI arrests during the Labor Day weekend compared to last year, according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol.

The OSHP conducted its annual Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign this past weekend in order to deter intoxicated and distracted driving. During the campaign, which coincided with the Labor Day weekend Sept. 4-7, the St. Clairsville Post made 12 OVI arrests.

Lt. Maurice Waddell said the arrests have decreased slightly from last year’s holiday weekend when troopers made 15 OVI arrests.

“We ended up arresting 12 OVI’s, we led our district in OVI arrests,” he said. “That’s not that much of a decrease (from last year), there’s still people out there driving impaired.”

The district includes six posts and 12 counties.

Waddell said there were five traffic accidents and no injuries or fatalities this past weekend. During the same weekend last year, there were nine traffic accidents and four crashes with injuries.

“As a post and as a district, we didn’t have any fatal crashes within our district,” he said. “We had five accidents involving property damage. We had no injury crashes, that was a good thing.”

Although the OSHP typically sees an increase in intoxicated driving during Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day, this year has been different possibly due to COVID-19 and a decrease in traffic. The traffic volume continues to be down from last year as well, he said.

“The traffic volume was pretty much the same, or similar to Memorial Day weekend and Fourth of July weekend. It wasn’t the traffic we normally had in previous years,” he said. “People aren’t travelling like they were during the previous year’s three holidays.”

The decrease in traffic could be a factor in the decrease in traffic accidents this year, he said.

Waddell said he continues to urge motorists to report incidents of impaired or reckless driving by calling the local post or dialing #677.

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