Deadly crashes: 56 fatalities in Lee County since January

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LEE COUNTY, Fla.- Lee County is looking at one of its deadliest years on the road yet. So far, 56 people have died in 2015 in traffic accidents.

Jay Anderson is the executive director of Stay Alive, Just Drive. His job is to help prevent injuries and fatalities on the road through education. But, his job has gotten tougher.

“When the fatality rate spikes the way it has, we ask ourselves what are we doing wrong?” said Anderson.

The number of deaths this year is getting close to 2014’s total of 81 fatalities, and it’s only July.

“Realistically, 99 percent of all crashes are a direct result of driver error,” said Anderson.

That’s why Anderson says they’re preventable.

An 84-year-old was killed on Alico Road Tuesday, making a U-turn in front of a dump truck.

Joseph Brocato, 56, of North Myers, died when his motorcycle collided with a minivan. Authorities say the minivan’s driver was driving on the wrong side of the road.

“We stress the importance of being on your A game all the time, every time you are behind the wheel. And the only way you can do that realistically, is to treat every day like a driving lesson,” said Anderson.

He says there are other things you can do to stay safe.

“Adjust your mirrors. Use them when you drive. Properly adjusted mirrors do eliminate 99 percent of blind spots. The only space we are in control of, is the distance between ourselves and the car in front of us. We have no control what happens to the left, the right or behind us.”

Stay Alive, Just Drive does offer driving lessons and evaluations, no matter how long you’ve had your license.

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