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Diligent patrols continue on Bond

The Washington State Patrol reported this week that its troopers investigated 54 collisions along the five-mile stretch of Bond Road last year and of those incidents, five people were killed.

Intoxicated drivers were the cause for three of the five fatal collisions, the report stated. Of these, two were the drivers at the time of the collisions and were found to be impaired by alcohol. The third was killed by a drunk driver.

Troopers stated the leading cause of the deaths were intoxicated drivers, but speed, following too close, failing to yield to the right of way and negligent driving were also contributing factors in the other collisions.

With three of the five deaths attributed to alcohol and/or drugs, troopers plan to focus their efforts on removing impaired drivers from the roadways by being vigilant about patrolling during times when intoxicated drivers are typically on the road, said WSP spokesman Brian George.

There are approximately 30 troopers who work throughout Kitsap County and have to balance out where they patrol.

Even so, “We are making sure that when we are able to be proactive, we are proactive in the North Kitsap area,” George said.

The causes of the remaining collisions were attributed to improper driver behavior. In 17 of the 54 collisions, troopers cited drivers for driving too fast for conditions. This can mean traveling too fast for heavy traffic volumes on the road.

Following speed, seven drivers were cited for tailgating and an additional seven were cited for failing to yield the right of way. Six drivers were also cited for negligent driving. As a rule, negligent driving is driving with disregard for safety of persons or property, George said, noting that the charge includes actions like speeding, hitting another vehicle, taking out a mailbox, running a stop sign, cutting off vehicles in a no-passing zone, weaving back and forth on the road or doing a combination of any of these actions.

“Troopers realize there is a problem on Bond Road — or increase in fatality collisions along Bond Road — and are weighing out their options for more enforcement (by citing negligent driving),” George said.

Penalties for unsafe driving habits can range from the basic infraction fine of $101 to more than $500 for a negligent driving citation. Criminal charges may also be added if the driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

In regards to practicing safe driving habits, responsible drivers need to determine if, while on the road, they are able to stop without hitting the vehicle in front of them, the WSP report states.

To drive defensively, motorists must increase the distance between their vehicle and the one in front of it to allow space for a sudden or even an emergency stop. They should also make sure everyone in their is properly restrained to prevent injuries in the case of a collision.

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