FHP targets drunks during busy travel period | floridatoday.com | FLORIDA TODAY

FHP Targets Drunks During Busy Travel Period


Schoolís out, the holiday week is here and itís time to hit the highway. According to the AAA Auto Club, 87 million travelers are expected to travel more than 50 miles from home between Wednesday and Jan. 3. That includes as many as 5.5 million Floridians.

Nationally, thatís a projected 4 percent increase over peak travel last year. But roadways will be a little less congested in Florida, where itís anticipated 4.7 percent fewer travelers will hit the road. The economy was cited as a major factor in why some are choosing to stay put for the holiday.

The vast majority of travelers, about 88 percent surveyed by IHS Global Insight and D.K. Shifflet & Associates for AAA, said they would travel by car this holiday season. Round trips will average 791 miles this year.

Last year nationwide there were 84.5 million travelers, a 4.7 percent decline over holiday travel in 2007.

In anticipation of a boost in traffic, nonetheless, Florida Highway Patrol is taking part in a nationwide highway safety campaign targeting drunken drivers.

The enforcement effort kicked off Saturday and runs through Jan. 3.

FHP officials said they will use zero tolerance enforcement efforts that include sobriety checkpoints and saturation patrols to target impaired drivers as well as those violating other traffic laws that put themselves and other motorists at risk.