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The State | IN BRIEF / BARSTOW

Highway Deaths Up in Desert Area, CHP Says

November 18, 2002|From Times Wire Reports

Highway deaths have increased this year in the 13,000-square-mile desert region, prompting the California Highway Patrol to add new officers in the area.

Eighty-six people have died so far this year, up from the 63 travelers killed last year, officials said.

In many cases, drivers lulled by the monotony of the landscape fell asleep, said Capt. Lisa Lawrence, commander of the CHP's Barstow office.

As a sleeping driver's car drifts to the shoulder, the driver awakens and impulsively hits the brakes, sending the cars veering sharply back into traffic, Lawrence said.

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