Robeson County officials work to combat driving deaths

ROBESON COUNTY, NC (WMBF) - Robeson County is working to make its roads safer.

Local and state leaders started a task force called Robeson County Vision Zero to brainstorm ways to combat reckless driving. This comes after the county ranked as North Carolina's deadliest for car crashes for the fifth year in a row.

In Robeson County, North Carolina High Patrol troopers said there were five deaths from accidents in just the past seven days. Approximately 47 people were killed on Robeson County roads just last year.

Law enforcement officials said two of the main problems are people not wearing their seat belts and driving under the influence.

According to a press release from the North Carolina Department of Transportation, in the past five years, more than 40 percent of fatal crashes in Robeson County involved people not buckling up. Almost one third of those accidents involved alcohol.

At a Thursday meeting, officials said some thing they need to work on is educating neighbors.

"The key is going to be education, starting with our primary school kids and going to our high school and into college kids," NCHP Sgt. Philip Collins said. "That's where the most change is going to come from, educating the public as this is a problem we have in Robeson County and this is the solution - wear your seat belt, don't drink and drive, slow down. Those are the changes that are going to make a big difference."

The task force will meet again in the coming months.

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