MONTGMERY, Ala (WIAT) — With a big Fourth of July weekend almost here, families will be hitting highways across Alabama in search of holiday fun.
But recent deadly crashes statewide have state troopers anxious and warning motorists to drive safely.
“So, we are going to be out again in force throughout this extended holiday weekend,” said Cpl. Jeremy Burkett with the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency.
Burkett said troopers will have extra patrols across the state in the coming days, especially areas known to be accident-prone.
“Our high-crash areas, looking for those violations, looking for following too close, looking for distracted driving. If we see somebody texting on their phone, we’re going to go out and take enforcement action and try to address that,” Burkett said.
Burkett said as restrictions from the COVID-19 pandemic ease up in Alabama, troopers have seen a tremendous influx of cars on the highways. That increase has also been noticed by officials with the Alabama Department of Transportation.
“Speeding is the leading, contributing factor in most fatal crashes. And all you have to do is look at those speed limits and follow those,” ALDOT spokeswoman Allison Green said.
Burkett said that along with slowing down, not texting and paying attention, he advises drivers to always plan ahead for the worst.
“Something as simple as a crash that’s shut down the interstate and you haven’t even got enough fuel to where you can sit in traffic for two are three hours,” he said. “Especially if you have small children or even pets in the vehicle.”
And as always, troopers say if you’re going to drink this holiday weekend, make sure you have a designated driver or other arrangement to get you home.