IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - "Up until this weekend, we had 117 fatal crashes in 2019. After this weekend in 2020 we are up to 91 fatal crashes. So we're doing better, but also with that, people aren't traveling as much. So what we are seeing is people who are traveling are traveling faster," said Idaho Transportation Department's public information officer Aubrie Spence.
Spence tells us officers are pulling over more people for speeding than normal. She says the open roadways are making people let their guard down.
"And they're thinking, 'oh the road is open, I can travel faster.' So just make sure that when you're out and about, make sure that you wear your seatbelt, you slow down, and you can get to your destination responsibly."
On July 1, Idaho became a hands free state, which means it is against the law to use a handheld electronic device while driving, even if you're at a stoplight or stop sign.
Spence tells us, while that cuts out a big common distraction while driving, for teenagers, there's another common distraction to be aware of.
"But on top of that when you're new to driving you have friends in the car and it's very exciting and a lot of those things happen while you're driving to be distracted, so make sure if you're a passenger in the car, especially if you're a teenage driver that you take time to slow down and make sure that you're focused on the task at hand," Spence said.
Besides cars, Spence says you need to always be alert to wildlife that may be on the roadways as well.
"So when you're making those summer plans to drive, make sure that you wear a helmet when you're riding a motorcycle. Be sure to buckle up, obey the speed limits and make sure that you have a sober ride to get to and from your destination. I think making a plan on how you're going to get to and from your destination safely and make sure you give yourself enough time," Spence said.