May 2002 - Monthly Fatality Report

Department of Public Safety officials report an increase of four traffic fatalities in May for a total of 55, compared to 51 in the same month last year.

Four of the 55 victims were pedestrians and four were motorcyclists which leaves the total of those killed in vehicle crashes at 47. The highest daily numbers includes 14 deaths on Saturdays dropping to 11 on Thursdays. There were eight deathless days in the month.

Seven of the fatality vehicle crashes were alcohol-related in the opinion of the investigating state, county or municipal officer. There were 38 male and 17 female victims, and four of the fatalities were nonresidents of Oklahoma.

The leading number of deaths by age group was 11 in the 17- to 20-year-old age group, followed by 10 among the 41- to 50-year-olds. Oklahoma County led the state with a fatality count of six followed by four deaths in Stephens County.

Seventy-four percent of those who died in traffic crashes were not wearing safety belts at the time of the crash, according to DPS statistics. For the first time since July 2000, failure to stop or yield has surpassed unsafe speed as the leading cause of death last month. Twelve people died because the driver failed to stop or yield, seven died due to unsafe speed followed by four deaths for traveling left of center.