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Police: More holiday crashes this year

The Christmas season of 2022 resulted in an increase in the number of motor vehicle crashes and people injured and killed, compared to 2021, according to data released by the Pennsylvania State Police.

That data shows state police investigated 661 motor vehicle crashes in which seven people died and 113 others were injured during the holiday weekend from Dec. 23-25. Comparatively, in 2021, there were 488 crashes, five fatalities and 90 persons injured.

State police said alcohol continues to be a problem, as there were 36 alcohol-related incidents this year, although that number is down from 41 in 2021. There were two alcohol-related fatal crashes this year, compared to one over the last Christmas holiday.

Otherwise, enforcement data showed police made fewer arrests for driving under the influence of alcohol and speeding this year.

Over the holiday period that just ended, there were 116 DUI arrests, down from the 181 in 2021; and 451 speeding arrests, significantly lower than the 1,131 that officers made last year. Police also issued almost 500 fewer “other citations,” showing 2,248 this year, compared to 2,728 a year ago.

In the category of child seat citations, state police cited 11 drivers this year, compared to 24 in 2021.

A breakdown of the crash and enforcement data in The Press coverage area:

Troop L – Berks, Schuylkill and Lebanon counties: crash data – 34 crashes, 10 persons injured and 4 alcohol-related crashes; enforcement data – 8 DUI arrests, 39 speeding citations, 3 child seat citations, 3 seat belt citations, 10 seat belt warnings, 119 other citations and 11 criminal arrests.

Troop M – Bucks, Lehigh and Northampton counties: crash data – 37 crashes, 1 fatal accident, 1 person killed, 4 persons injured, 2 alcohol-related crashes and 1 person killed due to an alcohol-related crash; enforcement data – 17 DUI arrests, 37 speeding arrests, 1 child seat citation, 4 seat belt citations, 2 seat belt warnings, 211 other citations and 7 criminal arrests.

Troop N – Carbon, Columbia and Monroe counties: crash data – 30 crashes, 5 persons injured and 2 alcohol-related crashes; enforcement data – 10 DUI arrests, 12 speeding arrests, 3 seat belt citations, 111 other citations and 8 criminal arrests.

State police said these statistics cover only those incidents investigated by the state police and do not include incidents to which other law enforcement agencies responded.