Crash fatalities doubled on Massachusetts roadways in April


BOSTON (WPRI) — The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) says the rate of fatalities on the state’s roadways doubled last month in comparison to last April.

With 50% less traffic recorded on major highways, 28 people died in crashes in April 2020 compared to 27 in April 2019.

“During the pandemic, everyone in the Commonwealth has sacrificed and used disciplined actions to keep themselves, their loved ones, and our community safe,” Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver said. “We ask that all residents use this same dedication to safety and reduce their speeds when driving.”

MassDOT says the high fatality rate last month highlights the importance of not exceeding the speed limit, wearing a seat belt, driving sober, and obeying the hands-free law even with reduced traffic volume.

Motorists should also expect to see more people walking, running or biking in the street to maintain a safe distance from those on the sidewalk, WalkBoston Executive Director Stacey Beuttell noted.

“If you are driving, be prepared to yield to people walking and drive slowly. Empty streets are not a license to drive faster,” Beuttell said. “Please consider every street a shared street and stay safe.”

MassDOT added that the motor vehicle deaths occurred statewide.

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