Increased patrols by the Wheeling Police Department and Ohio State Highway Patrol saturated Ohio Valley roadways on both sides of the river with law enforcement during Memorial Day weekend.
Wheeling police Cpl. Neil Fowkes, who serves as the department's Highway Safety coordinator, said a Highway Safety Patrol put extra officers on the city streets between Friday and Monday.
Wheeling officers took the following actions over the holiday weekend as a result of traffic stops:
- Arrested five drivers for DUI, two aggravated;
- Arrested one fugitive from justice; and
- Arrested one driver for fourth-offense driving revoked for DUI.
The Ohio State Highway Patrol announced that 14 people died on that state's roadways during the Memorial Day weekend, but none in local accidents.
According to Sgt. Jason Greenwood, the St. Clairsville post was at 100 percent manpower, with every available trooper working over the holiday weekend.
From Friday through Monday, troopers patrolled roads in Belmont and Monroe counties during 10- and 12-hour shifts.
Troopers took the following actions over the holiday weekend:
- Made 869 traffic stops;
- Issued citations to 604 drivers;
- Issued warnings to 265 drivers;
- Assisted 73 motorists;
- Made three felony and four misdemeanor arrests;
- Made 11 operating a vehicle intoxicated arrests;
- Served one felony and two misdemeanor warrants; and
- Handled nine crashes, none with injuries.
The 14 fatalities statewide amounted to one more than during the same four-day period last year.
The patrol said three of the fatalities were related to impaired driving, down from seven such deaths in 2012.
Arrests of motorists for suspicion of impaired driving increased nearly 5 percent this year.
Drug arrests over the holiday were up 62 percent from last year, with central Ohio troopers reporting the largest number.
Belmont County sheriff's Chief Deputy Bill Artrip said the weekend passed without any major incidents.
He also dismissed a circulating rumor about fatalities at an ATV park in St. Clairsville, calling it "totally untrue."