OPP say road fatalities increase 24% over 2021

Wellington OPP say distraction thefts occur in stores or parking lots and they are reminding the public to remain vigilant following an incident in Fergus in January. Ryan Rocca / Global News File

Ontario Provincial Police officers are pleading with motorists to drive safely over the upcoming holiday long weekend.

This comes as the OPP released annual statistics regarding road fatalities on the highways officers patrolled over the past year.

So far this year, there have been 268 deaths on Ontario highways, which the OPP says is a 24 per cent increase from 2021.

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Broken down into categories, 69 deaths have been speed-related, 57 have been inattentiveness, 40 caused by drug and alcohol impairment, and another 40 have been linked to the lack of seatbelt use.

“Over the long weekend, the OPP will join police services across the country for Operation Impact,” an OPP news release stated.

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“This national, annual traffic safety campaign is among the most robust police enforcement and education initiatives to target drivers who are alcohol or drug impaired, aggressive and inattentive/distracted, as well as vehicle occupants who fail to buckle up or properly restrain toddlers and children.”

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