Are you planning a trip this Memorial Day weekend? If you are, be sure to drive sober and always buckle up, as the Illinois Department of Transportation recently announced that police will be adding extra patrols over the long weekend.
The extra patrols are being added for a couple of reasons. For starters. traffic fatalities in 2016 are outpacing last year’s numbers, as traffic fatalities are up 18 percent at this point compared to last year. Secondly, Memorial Day weekend is historically one of the more dangerous weekends on the roads. There’s higher traffic volume, the good weather means people are driving at higher speeds, and the long weekend means more people may choose to celebrate their extra day off with alcohol.
“Memorial Day weekend is upon us, with families and friends expected to travel in and through the metro east for social gathering, picnic and other festivities. Oftentimes these social activities include an increase in alcohol consumption. One drunk driver can turn an exciting enjoyable summer event into a tragedy,” said District 11 Interim Commander Lt. Timothy Tyler.
13 people died on Illinois roads over the Memorial Day weekend last year, and the Department of Transportation hopes that travelers will make safe decisions now that they know there will be an added police presence on the roads.
“We are very concerned about the upturn of motor-vehicle fatalities in Illinois,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “To start getting those numbers going in the opposite direction, we encourage everyone to take one critical action that can save them in a crash – buckle up. Don’t make this holiday weekend a tragic one.”
Fatal Four Driving Habits
Illinois police announced that the extra patrols will concentrate on the “fatal four” driving habits, which include:
- Driving Under The Influence
- Seat-Belt Usage
- Distracted Driving
Those fatal four driving habits aren’t in short supply over the Memorial Day weekend. According to 2015 statistics, police issued 3,309 speeding tickets, 961 seat-belt violations, cited 164 distracted drivers and made 217 drunk driving arrests during the four-day holiday weekend.
So if you’re heading to the lake this weekend or heading downtown to catch a show, make sure you drive sober, buckle up, maintain a safe speed and keep the distractions to a minimum. Nobody wants to receive a costly ticket or end up in handcuffs over the long weekend, but if you do, don’t hesitate to give Appelman Law a call. We’re available 24 hours a day over the Memorial Day weekend, so if you’re in a pinch, give us a call at (630) 717-7801.