Troopers ready for high holiday traffic

Published 11:00 pm Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Traffic is expected to be heavier than usual over the July 4 holiday and Alabama State Troopers are bolstering efforts to prevent crashes, injuries and fatalities on the state’s roadways.

“ALDOT is restricting lane closures and interstate construction during the busy Fourth of July travel period to make highways safer and less congested,” said ALDOT spokesperson Tony Harris. “We can do a lot from an engineering and enforcement standpoint to impact safety, but safe driving starts with every driver.”

The holiday travel period officially began at 12:01 a.m. today and runs through midnight on Sunday. Troopers and law enforcement partners throughout the state began holiday enforcement activities Wednesday morning.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Troopers and other law enforcement agencies will enforce all traffic laws, according to the DPS, and will also assist motorists and serve as visible reminders to drive safely. Enforcement plans include driver license and sobriety checkpoints, saturation and line patrols and the operation of speed detection devices.

“So far this year, troopers have investigated 250 traffic fatalities,” said Col. Hugh B. McCall, the state’s highest-ranking trooper and the Department of Public Safety director. “That number is down from this time last year – and troopers are working to keep it down with heightened trooper presence.”

McCall said everyone should buckle up, no matter how short the trip and motorists should avoid distractions such as texting and talking on cell phones while driving.

“Let’s work together, Alabama,” McCall said. “Let’s make a positive difference on our roadways and save lives.”

Increased patrols during the Independence Day holiday were made possible through grants administered through the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs and ALDOT.