GRAND JUNCTION, CO - State troopers report there has been an increase in the number of traffic fatalities this year and with the month of August usually seeing a rise law enforcement is taking extra precautions.
Especially due to the traffic expected for the viewing of the solar eclipse.
Ever since 2014 authorities say there has been a 10% increase in deaths on the roadway.
So far this year there is a 17% increase on top of the previous years numbers.
Most of these deaths are categorized as distracted drivers and lane changes with impaired drivers racking up the most deaths.
Because of these high numbers and the upcoming traffic expected as a result of the eclipse troopers ask that drivers plan for extra travel time to ensure safety.
"With the solar eclipse coming up we have just loads of traffic that is going to be on the roadways just here within the next week. So unfortunately we are expecting that we are going to have with those higher volumes that were going to have more crashes. Hopefully were not going to have the fatalities but we really want to caution people to watch what they are doing on the roadways and drive defensively, " said Dan Chermok, Colorado State Patrol.
Law enforcement has also began taking precautions for labor day weekend with their heat is on campaign beginning today.