Local police ready for busy holiday travel weekend
by Jeff Gable
11 hrs ago | 28 views | 0 | 0 | |
Memorial Day is often considered the official kickoff to summer, and local law-enforcement officials are hoping this weekend will be a safe one.
Rome police, Floyd County police and the Georgia State Patrol will all be out in force today through Monday to watch for reckless, dangerous and drunk drivers in an effort to keep roads as safe as possible.
According to information from the GSP, the 78-hour holiday that starts at 6 p.m. tonight and ends Monday at midnight could see more than 2,700 wrecks statewide. The state is estimating there will be 875 injuries and 18 deaths during that period.
Last year in Georgia, the Memorial Day weekend saw almost 2,500 wrecks with 721 injuries and 14 fatalities.
Col. Bill Hitchens, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Safety, said troopers and other law-enforcement officers are anticipating a busier travel weekend than in 2008.
“Last year, motor vehicle travel was considerably lighter than previous Memorial Day holiday travel periods due to the price of gasoline,” Hitchens said. “This year, we anticipate travel to be heavier.”
With so many drivers on local roads, Rome and Floyd County police officials said attention to detail and safe driving are important — as well as making sure nobody intends on drinking and driving.
“This weekend is usually pretty busy every year, and this weekend we have several graduations going on as well as some other special events in the area,” said Lt. Mark Tison of the Rome Police Department. “We’ll probably have a lot more traffic on the road, with school getting out and a lot of people heading out of town.
“We’re not expecting anything extraordinary, but our special enforcement units and DUI task force will be working all weekend,” Tison added.
Cpl. Greg Beck of the Floyd County Police Department said finding impaired drivers will also be a priority for county officers.
Beck reminded parents that children shorter than 4-foot-9 need to be in a booster seat or car seat, and children weighing less than 40 pounds should always be in a properly restrained car seat.
Click here to see more travel safety information.