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NEW ORLEANS During the Thanksgiving holiday week, 14 people were killed in 13 crashes across the state and half of those killed were not wearing seat belts, according to the Louisiana State Police. Two of the crashes involved driver impairment.

In 2011, Louisiana was below the national seat belt usage rate of 84 percent. The state's average was 77.7 percent.

Louisiana law requires every occupant to be properly restrained.

In 2011, over 42 percent of Louisiana's motor vehicle fatalities were the result of driver impairment.

'Drivers should put a plan in place prior to consuming alcohol because judgment is the first thing that is affected,' police said.

The 13 crashes occurred as follows:

  • Troop A in Baton Rouge: One crash resulting in one death. Excessive speed is a factor.
  • Troop D in Lake Charles: One crash resulting in two deaths. Seat belts were not used and chemical tests for impairment are pending.
  • Troop E in Alexandria: One crash resulting in one death. Seat belts were not used.
  • Troop F in Monroe: Two crashes resulting in two deaths, one of which was a pedestrian. Seat belts were not used and one crash involved impairment.
  • Troop I in Lafayette: Six crashes resulting in six deaths, one was a pedestrian and one was a motorcycle. Three of the six crashes involved lack of seat belt usage and one impaired driver.
  • Troop L in Mandeville: Two crashes resulting in two deaths. One of the crashes involved an impaired driver.
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