Police Officers Warn Drivers To Slow Down On State Roadways

Two deadly accidents on South Mississippi Highways this week have local law enforcement officials reminding drivers to be extra careful of the roads. Officers with the Biloxi Police Department say some people along the coast are getting careless when it comes to highway safety.

"All of us drive and we all have some bad habits. Every single one of us, self included. But we have to be aware, conscience of that and work on those and co-exist with our fellow man and our fellow driver out there," says Chief Bruce Dunagan with the Biloxi Police Department.

From speeding to aggressive driving, officers agree there are many factors that play into the number of accidents.

One problem is congested roadways. Since Katrina destroyed bridges and roadways, drivers are forced to use alternate routes to get in and out of the city making for a traffic nightmare.

"Naturally those times in the morning and during the afternoon you have a higher traffic flow and you have higher occurrences of accidents with vehicles," says Louis Moran, a crash reconstructionist with the Biloxi Police Department.

He says every year there are about 3400 reported accidents. However only a small percentage have injuries and even fewer fatalities.

"In 2005 we had six fatal crashes, 2006 we had nine with as many people killed in each crash. Right now we are at one for the year," says Moran.

That one fatality happened Tuesday morning on the 1-10 Cedar Lake Overpass.

Officers say the driver hit a pick-up truck, lost of her vehicle and was ejected from the car.      That's something they say may have been preventable if she were wearing a seat belt.

Officers are sending a reminder to drivers: Slow Down, Be Careful and buckle-up.