ST PAUL, Minn. — Officials say eight people were killed on Minnesota roads over Memorial Day weekend, matching 2018 for the deadliest Memorial Day weekend since 2010.
According to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS), four of the deaths were speed related, two deaths are suspected to be alcohol related, and two were motorists not wearing seat belts.
“Our thoughts are with the families and friends of the people who did not come home this weekend,” said State Patrol Lt. Gordon Shank in a release. “We are extremely frustrated by the number of drivers who are treating the roadway like the raceway and performing other dangerous behaviors behind the wheel. Lives are being cut short, ending dreams before they began. If we don’t act now, we’ll see traffic fatalities totaling numbers we haven’t seen in several years. Drive smart and help get your friends and family home safely.”
Memorial Day weekend is the beginning of what is historically the most traveled 100 days on Minnesota roads.
According to the DPS, 159 people have died on the roads so far this year, a 43% increase from a year ago. Of the 159 deaths, 67 were speed related, officials say.
Last year, 158 people died on Minnesota roads from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend (May 25 to Sept. 7), marking the deadliest summer in a decade.
Officials say extra law enforcement will be out on the roads across the state throughout the summer months.