COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State Highway Patrol is reporting that 17 people lost their lives in traffic crashes during the July Fourth reporting period, which began Friday, June 30 and ended Tuesday, July 4, 2017. Impairment was proven to be a factor in five of those crashes.

Troopers made 908 arrests for impaired driving and 624 for drug-related charges. The Patrol responded to 807 crashes and made more than 43,000 traffic contacts in total, which included assisting more than 5,000 motorists.

“When someone chooses to drive after a night of drinking, the consequences can be deadly,” said Colonel Paul A. Pride, Patrol superintendent. “That’s why troopers make OVI enforcement a priority, whether they’re patrolling during a long holiday weekend or any other night. Motorists should be smart and always plan a sober way home.”

During last year’s Fourth of July reporting period from July 1 to July 4, there were a total of 12 fatal crashes that killed 13 people. This included seven OVI-related fatal crashes which killed eight people.

Motorists are encouraged to call #677 to report impaired drivers or drug activity.