(WTNH) — There were 12 traffic deaths on Memorial Day weekend in Connecticut, a four-day period that typically only sees four.

Two crashes resulted in eight deaths combined. Four were killed on I-95 in Guilford Sunday morning after a wrong-way driver struck a pick up truck in the left lane. On Monday afternoon in Thompson, an 18-year-old lost control of his vehicle and collided with a tree, killing himself and three passengers.

With the state now eclipsing 140 fatal crashes on the year, Connecticut is now on pace to exceed 400 for 2022, a number the state has not seen since the 1980s.

“Speeds are up, crashes are up, fatal crashes unfortunately also up,” said Josh Morgan, CTDOT communications manager.

News 8 spoke with people who described what they saw on the state roads over the holiday weekend.

“Coming from work over on I-84, I just got cut off, they just slammed right in front of me with no indication of anything, also I some somebody going the wrong way, yes to stop and turn around on the highway,” a Connecticut driver shared.

Every driver News 8 spoke to shared they had been cut off and they had people race by them at reckless speeds. When commuters were asked if they were surprised by the Memorial Day weekend traffic, they said this kind of driving happens every day, every night on the highways around Connecticut.

State police also made 37 DUI arrests and wrote up 145 tickets for seatbelt violations over the holiday weekend.

Law enforcement is the main deterrent for reckless driving. Both the governor and state police affirm that highway enforcement is strong once again. 

“Citations are up, the notice is out there. People have been warned and you will be held accountable, speeding or otherwise, driving recklessly,” said Governor Ned Lamont.

“Troopers are out there, they’re stopping cars, we are at those levels that we were beforehand, the numbers reflect that,” said State Police Sgt. Dawn Pagan.

Pagan is referring to their data from Memorial Day weekend. 615 traffic stops were for speeding violations.

She said all four who died in the Thompson crash were not wearing seatbelts, a warning for drivers and passengers that you are not invincible.

“I don’t want people to think this can’t happen to them. It’s very real. It’s something we want them to know, the little things are in your control. You can make a difference,” Pagan said.

Although state police highway patrols are back to pre-pandemic levels, DUI checkpoints are still lagging.

“What they’re having an issue with now is having officers that can staff those DUI checkpoints. So the number of DUI checkpoints has dropped dramatically, and the advertising has dropped dramatically,” said Dr. Eric Jackson, executive director at the UConn Transportation Safety Center.

This poses a problem, since most wrong way drivers are impaired.

AAA is now warning about the 100 Deadliest Days for teen drivers, a period of time from Memorial Day until Labor Day. More than 30% of deaths involving teen drivers occur during this time.