It was a busy holiday weekend in West Virginia for State Police, who arrested at least 43 impaired drivers and wrote more than 2,000 tickets for various offenses statewide.
Troopers around the state participated in a combined accident reduction effort (CARE) July 4-7, said Sgt. Christopher Zerkle, director of the traffic records division. They were hoping to prevent crashes and were on the lookout for speeders and reckless and aggressive drivers.
Officers wrote 1,922 speeding tickets, issued 248 seatbelt citations and 12 citations for child restraint infractions, Zerkle said. They also gave 517 warnings, plus 23 more for those with improper child restraints.
Troopers worked 70 crashes, eight of which were alcohol related. They also made 43 DUI arrests.
Troopers also assisted 578 motorists who needed help on the roads.
Three people died in three crashes around the state. Zerkle said in only one of those instances was the person killed wearing a seatbelt.
Zerkle said he did not know how many distracted driving citations and warnings were issued, as that was not previously included on the forms troopers use to track those records. He said the new form, which was updated recently, now includes a place for that information.
Officers could pull motorists over if they saw them driving and using their cellphones without a hands-free devise starting July 1. Texting while driving became a primary offense in July 1, 2012.
Officers also could pull motorists over starting July 9 if they saw them driving without wearing a seatbelt.