Patrol continues to focus on drugged driving

Staff report -

COLUMBUS — As part of the Ohio State Highway Patrol’s ongoing effort to make Ohio roadways safe, troopers continue to focus on drugged driving.

In 2019, there were 3,915 drugged driving crashes in Ohio. More than one in four of those crashes took place in Cuyahoga, Franklin and Hamilton counties.

There were just 11 drugged driving crashes in Crawford County, 19 in Morrow County, 43 in Richland, 31 in Huron County, 17 in Seneca County, four in Wyandot County and 30 in Marion County.

Of the 1,041 fatal crashes which occurred in Ohio last year, 35 percent had at least one driver or pedestrian test positive for an illegal or prescription drug. Of those, 19 percent were only drugs, while 16 percent involved drugs and alcohol.

“We need all Ohioans committed to driving on our roadways safely,” Governor Mike DeWine said. “The consequences are serious and real when drivers decide to take the wheel after taking drugs.”

Last year, troopers cited 5,215 people suspected of driving under the influence of one or more drugs.

“We take impaired driving seriously, and continue to be committed to promoting safety on Ohio’s roadways through aggressive drugged driving enforcement,” Colonel Richard S. Fambro, Patrol superintendent said. “It is inherently dangerous, and simply not worth the risk to get behind the wheel while impaired.”

The number of drugged driving crashes increased from 21 percent in2018 to 35 percent last year. The two primary reasons for the increase were:

1) a revision to the OH-1 crash report that allows up to four drug results for each person involved in a crash and;

2) a more thorough process to supplement alcohol and drug results for fatal crashes based on crime lab and coroner’s reports.

The Patrol reminds you to call #677 when you see unsafe motorists driving on Ohio roads.

Staff report