GREENVILLE, PITT COUNTY - The county that puts you at the highest risk to be involved in a traffic accident in North Carolina is Pitt County. AAA released an annual report that puts Pitt County is in the number one spot for the sixth year in a row.
However, The Highway Patrol Trooper Coley said the number of wrecks in Pitt County has actually gone down compared to last year.
"By all means slow down. Speed is the number one cause of wrecks in Pitt County," Trooper Coley said.
AAA reports there were close to 5000 crashes last year in the county. Trooper Coley said it has do with a lot of factors, one of them, the amount of drivers in Pitt County.
"We have a lot of traffic in this area in excess of 20,000, college students from East Carolina University, and Pitt Community College also has a large amount," Trooper Coley said.
Linda Little moved her daughter into ECU this weekend. They're not from the area, but this stat doesn't surprise them.
"It's just strange. I was rear-ended prior to coming to Walmart!," Little said.
Trooper Coley also encourages drivers to add the right amount of time for their commutes. He said with schools starting in the next two weeks there will be a lot more inexperienced drivers on the road.
"In the mornings and in the afternoons, we are also going to have school buses on the roadways," Trooper Coley said.
The wrecks are not only in the city, but also the rural areas.
"The rural roads, paved roads, and the secondary roads, that's where we have had half our wrecks," Trooper Coley said.
Trooper Coley said the large amount of deer also factors in. Justin McLawhorn lives on the outskirts of Greenville. McLawhorn said he's tried to be careful but has run into three deer in the two years he's lived there.
"People from Greenville, they don't really drive out here in the country a lot. So, when they're driving out here they're not really thinking about deer. If you aren't thinking about it, you aren't paying attention to it. That's when you're going to hit one," McLawhorn said.
Trooper Coley said so far this year in Pitt County Wednesdays are the days with the most wrecks compared to Friday's last year.
He said they're putting more troopers at areas most prone to wrecks to try to lessen the numbers.
AAA reported about three people die a day in traffic crashes in the state.