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Traffic fatalities on Wisconsin roads took a deadly turn for the worse in July, prompting transportation safety officials to issue a “call to action” urging all motorists to be safe/responsible

The 66 people who died in Wisconsin traffic crashes in July make it the deadliest month on state roadways so far this year, prompting officials with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) to issue a special call to all motorists: buckle-up, slow down, be sober and alert behind the wheel every day – every trip.

“Through law enforcement and public education, we’re doing everything we can to urge motorists to travel safely and responsibly,” said David Pabst, Director of WisDOT’s Bureau of Transportation Safety. “But in the end, it’s the responsibility of every driver and passenger to do their part to prevent needless tragedies along our roadways.”

Traffic fatalities last month were three more compared to July 2016, and 11 more than the five-year average for the month of July. Wisconsin’s safest July was in 2015, with 39 fatalities, while the deadliest occurred in 1966 and 1971, with 140 fatalities.

Through the first seven months of the year, a preliminary total of 338 people died along Wisconsin roadways, surpassing the 335 people killed over the same period last year. Wisconsin traffic fatalities through July include 192 car and truck drivers, 59 passengers, 45 motorcyclists and 38 pedestrians.

The annual “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign that starts Aug. 18 and runs through Labor Day will put more officers on the roads for longer hours looking for impaired drivers and other traffic law violators.

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