SPRINGDALE, Utah (ABC4 News) – July may be known for barbecues and beach days, but it’s a dangerous tie to be on the roads. More die in drunk driving crashes in July than any other time of the year, according to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Park rangers at Zion National Park say they’ve teamed up with local law enforcement to crack down on impaired driving this weekend, as twenty-five thousand visitors are expected every day between July 4-7.
The enforcement will continue through expanded checkpoints and increased road patrols for visitor safety, according to park officials.
“They’re gonna be out here making sure that we can truly be safe, be present, and truly soak in this beautiful area,” said Zion National Park ranger Eugenne Moisa.
Impaired driving in Zion National Park is especially dangerous along Zion-Mt. Carmel highway because of traffic congestion, narrow roads, steep drop-offs
One person dies in a motor vehicle crash every week on National Park Service roadways, according to park officials.
10,874 people were killed in impaired driving crashes in 2017 in the United States, according to park officials, translating to one drunk driving related death occurring every 48 minutes.
“It’s a time of year where a lot of people are drinking maybe a little more than they should be. It’s just important for them to know to stay off the roads and keep it safe for everyone else,” said Zion National Park visitor Chris Puglia.
Rangers suggest that if you’re planning to drink, you should stay off the roads, use the free shuttle, and have a designated driver to stay safe.