Mother of motorcyclist killed in crash warns drivers of '100 Deadliest Days'
By Jaewon Jung,2023-05-31
Memorial Day kicked off the unofficial start of summer, but it also serves as a grim reminder of the alarming fatal crashes nationwide.
The period between Memorial Day and Labor Day, when the number of deadly crashes spike nationwide, is known as the "100 Deadliest Days."
In Nevada, traffic-related fatalities are a big problem with 396 people losing their lives to them in 2022.
On Memorial Day, police said a motorcyclist lost his life in crash involving a motorcycle and bicycle in the east Las Vegas valley.
The crash happened just after 10:30 p.m. on Desert Inn East of Mojave.
Family members identified the motorcyclist as 26-year-old Edgar Carabes.
"He was strong and made me strong," said mother Connie Gonzalez. "No matter how times went, he was there."
According to the Nevada Office of Traffic Safety, there have already been 107 deaths this year on our roads through April. 69 of them are from Clark County.
"Since the start of the pandemic, we've had two contributing causes to fatal crashes overwhelmingly," said director of Road Equity Alliance Project Erin Breen. "Speed and impairment."
Road Equity Alliance Project is a group which is part of the Transportation Research Center at UNLV, working to improve safety on roads particularly for pedestrians in Clark County.
Traffic safety is a personal issue to Breen.
"In fact, 45 years ago a dear friend of mine was killed in a crash here in Las Vegas," Breen said. "It was Memorial Day weekend, so Memorial Day weekend is always something I gravitate towards."
Years later, Breen said her daughter was also involved in a near fatal crash traveling home from Southern California.
"It was a car full of young people," she said. "No sleep, missed a turn off, over-corrected and when she over-corrected she rolled the vehicle. Really what saved all of them was she rolled it off of the freeway into a V culvert."
Breen said everyone is impacted by deadly crashes and there's a reason why they happen more often this time of year.
"You're on vacation, you're not keeping a schedule," she said. "You're partying more than you usually do."
AAA Nevada spokesperson John Treanor said it's important drivers exercise extra caution this time of year.
"Many Americans are driving this summer for the first time in a long time, as COVID restrictions stop them from taking road trips or taking their family. That being said, during the pandemic, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety saw an increase in the number of very dangerous activities behind the wheel, namely driving under the influence and distracted driving," Treanor said. "And those things lead to an increase in crashes as well. So we think it's a great time to remind people to use common sense behind the wheel."
Gonzales hopes her son's death serves as a reminder to every driver to slow down and be careful.
"Watch for everyone, whether it's a motorcyclist, a person on a bike, a person in a wheelchair," Gonzales said. "Accidents always happen but they don't need to if we're extra careful."