State Police: Deadly weekend on RI highways

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NORTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WPRI) — The Labor Day weekend is hardly over, but it’s already been deadly on Rhode Island’s highways, according to Rhode Island State Police.

“On behalf of the state police, our hearts go out to the victims and the family members and friends of these tragic, tragic losses,” Sgt. Greg Cunningham said.

State police say three people have died in separate crashes in a span of roughly twelve hours.

The first crash happened just before 11 p.m. Saturday night.  34-year-old Dervi Pena of Providence died from his injuries following a crash involving two motorcycles and an SUV on I-95 North.

“It definitely appears as though one did not see the other. Car did not see the motorcycle, motorcycle did not see the car.  All the details are still coming together and those crashes are still under investigation,” Cunningham said.

Then on Sunday around 10:30 a.m., 31-year-old Raymond Atnip of Stoughton was killed after losing control of his motorcycle on I-95 South near Exit 27 in Pawtucket, according to state police.

About 45 minutes later, another deadly crash occurred on Route 6 West, near the onramp for I-295 South.  We’re told, a 26-year-old Nicholas Winfield of Scituate died after his vehicle crashed and caught fire.

Both of Sunday’s crashes remain under investigation.

Cunningham wants to remind everyone these lives lost are not just statistics, they’re people who leave behind family and friends.

“And if we don’t make a type of change, then these types of incidents are going to continue to happen and we have to have them stop,” Cunningham said.

As we’ve reported, extra troopers have been assigned to patrol the highways though out the weekend.

Colonel Assumpico tells us, from midnight Thursday to 3 p.m. Sunday, troopers arrested ten people for driving while intoxicated. They’ve also issued more than 200 citations, including 153 speeding tickets, 60 seatbelt violations, and 11 violations of the state’s hands-free law.

Anyone who witnesses unsafe or dangerous driving are encouraged to contact Rhode Island State Police immediately by dialing 911.

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