07/04/17  Drunk Driving Crack Down Continues Through 4th Holiday


The crack down on drunk drivers continues this 4th of July holiday, ”Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over”. The stepped up campaign began last Friday involving law enforcement agencies at all levels across the state.

In 2014, nationwide, there were 397 people killed in motor vehicle crashes over the 4th of July holiday period, that covered five days. Of those that died in those crashes, 164 people or 41 percent, died in crashes involving a driver or motor cycle operator with a blood alcohol concentration of .8 or higher.

Arkansas recorded it's first traffic fatality of July in Garland County on July 1.  According to a preliminary State Police report, 30 year old Day Watson of Mt. Pine, Arkansas died when he lost control of his 2005 Cobalt Chevrolet on Cedarglade Road, striking a culvert and overturning. Watson was ejected from the vehicle and died at the scene of the crash near Mt.Pine. Weather conditions were clear, roadway dry at the time of the crash Sunday afternoon at 12:47. Corporal James W. Avant of the State Police investigated. It was Arkansas 240th fatality of the year. There was no report of the use of alcohol or drugs in the fatal crash..but remember this 4th of July Holiday..”Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over”.

The 239th traffic fatality of the year was recorded in Sebastian County on U.S

Highway 71 at Brooken Hill Drive in Ft. Smith.

According to a preliminary state police report..63 year old Janet Kessler died of

injuries suffered in a crash involving three vehicles. Kessler's 2014 Chevrolet

Cruze..eastbound on Brooken Hill Drive was hit broadside by a southbound

2006 Toyta Tacoma..the light changed and the driver of the Tacoma attempted

to stop..but not in time and struck Kessler's vechile on the drivers side..Kessler's

car then spun into a light pole and then collided with a a north bound 2015

Hyundai Sonota..who was stopped in the northbound turning lane of U.S. 71.

The drivers of the other vehicles not available in the report.

The injured were taken to a Ft. Smith hospital..where Kessler died of her

injuries. Weather conditions were clear..the roadway dry at the time of the

crash at 11:14 Thursday morning. Ft. Smith PD investigated.