Roadways mostly quiet over holiday

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 29, 2004

While motorists were out and about for the holidays, area law enforcement officials were granted their wish for a peaceful Christmas weekend.

"It was relatively quiet," said Lt. Carl Roark with the Ohio State Highway Patrol. "There were a number of crashes, but no more than usual. We were pretty pleased overall. There were no fatal crashes in our jurisdiction."

That report continues last year's trend of no Christmas fatalities on Lawrence County's roadways, Roark said. This year, all 12 troopers from the patrol's outpost in South Point were out in force to prepare for the increased volume of traffic.

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AAA East Central had estimated that 62.7 million Americans would travel 50 miles or more during the next week. Of that number 50.9 million would be on the road-a 2.9 percent increase from the 49.4 million who drove a year ago.

Thanks to the troopers and to the responsible driving habits of area residents, the increase in traffic didn't present a huge problem, Roark said.

"A lot of people were designating a driver and were choosing to drive responsibly," he said.

Although Old Man Winter's presence has been felt in other parts of Ohio recently, he largely skipped this area for Christmas. Roark said he traveled to Dayton this weekend and was glad that all that snow didn't make its way to his jurisdiction.

"With the road conditions in the counties around us, we were pretty happy that we didn't have to deal with anything like that here," he said.