Drive safely during holiday weekend


RALEIGH – The Highway Patrol is reminding motorists to be careful as they enjoy the Labor Day holiday. According to AAA, 35.5 million people are expected travel during the Labor Day period. It is anticipated that 86 percent of travelers will get to their destinations by a car.

To ensure a safe driving environment for motorists, the Highway Patrol will increase patrols on all interstates and major four lane highways during the holiday which officially begins on Thursday, September 3 and ends at midnight on Monday, September 7.

Last year in North Carolina, troopers investigated 13 fatal collisions and 388 injury collisions over the Labor Day weekend.

Speed is the leading cause of traffic collisions and fatalities in the state. Troopers will be cracking down on speeders during the holiday and will be using LIDAR and other speed timing devices to assist them in enforcing the speed laws. Statistics have shown that motorists who slow down and travel at posted speeds will not only increase their chances of arriving at their destination safely but will also conserve fuel.

Troopers will also be on the lookout for aggressive drivers who tend to cause many crashes. The aggressive driver has been identified as those drivers who flagrantly violate the motor vehicle laws, including but not limited to excessive speeding, following too closely, erratic lane changes, safe movement violations, and other forms of reckless endangerment.

“Troopers across the state have been advised to crackdown on traffic violators on the highways and to apply strict enforcement to those motorists who are traveling at dangerous speeds or in a careless manner,” said Lt. Jeff Gordon, spokesman for the Highway Patrol. “Speed is the number one factor in fatal collisions and troopers will be looking for aggressive drivers, drunk drivers, and other violators while patrolling throughout the state during the holiday week.”

Residents may report crashes, drunk drivers, stranded motorists or other highway situations to the Highway Patrol by dialing *HP (*47) on their cellular telephones. This is a toll free call that connects the caller with the nearest Highway Patrol communications center.

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