Pennsylvania State Police Commissioner Paul J. Evanko announced yesterday that seven people were killed in traffic crashes investigated by the state police during the three-day Christmas holiday driving period.
Six of the victims were not wearing seatbelts.
"We repeat the message again and again: Please make sure that you and your passengers are buckled up before you start your vehicle," said Evanko.
In addition to the seven fatalities, 261 people were injured in the 666 crashes to which Pennsylvania State Police responded. Evanko said 52 crashes were alcohol related.
Last year's official Christmas driving period covered four days. During that period, six people were killed, and 274 were injured in 614 crashes investigated by state police.
As a result of past holiday crashes, officials are asking people to make buckling up a new year's resolution.
This holiday weekend alone, an estimated 364 people will die in motor-vehicle crashes, according to National Safety Council (NSC) estimates.
The NSC says that choosing to buckle up will save 255 lives this weekend and an additional 101 lives could be saved if everyone buckled up.