State Police: New Year’s weekend crashes up 80 percent
Updated 10:00 am, Tuesday, January 2, 2018
Slippery conditions from a Saturday snowfall helped cause a big increase in the number of accidents investigated by State Police during the long New Year’s holiday weekend.
From 12:01 a.m. on Friday to 11:59 p.m. on Monday, troopers responded to 494 accidents.
That number is a nearly 80 percent increase from the 276 accidents investigated in the 2016 New Year’s weekend.
Troopers also reported that 54 people were injured in those accidents, 20 more than the 2016 figure.
Two of those accidents were fatalities.
On Friday night, an Ansonia man was killed in a rear-end collision on Route 8 in Trumbull. William Pollock, 55, was driving south around 5 p.m. Friday, near Exit 8, when he struck the rear of a box truck and became entangled with the vehicle, police said.
Also on Friday night, Devra Lee Koromanian was killed after being ejected from her vehicle after hitting a Jersey barrier on Route 3 in Glastonbury.
The snow began falling just after sunrise on Saturday. By 9:30 a.m. there had been at least 40 reported accidents along the state’s main roadways, including I-95, the Merritt Parkway and I-84.
A dispatcher for Troop A said there were nearly 10 accidents between 9:45 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. from Exit 20 on I-84 westbound up to the New York state line.
About half were multi-car accidents with no major injuries. The rest were cars that spun out on the icy roadway, often into the guardrail, the dispatcher said.
With the snow falling, speeds on major roads were reduced to about 10 mph for most of the morning.
The weather may have also been a factor in fewer speeding tickets handed out during the holiday weekend.
In 2016, state police issued 611 speeding tickets, nearly a 100 fewer than the year before.
There was also a 22 percent reduction in the total number of moving violations this year. The 1,410 moving violations included unsafe lane changes, cell phone use and failure to signal.
State police say 28 people for DUI, six fewer than the previous year.