State police send reminder to be safer at home, safer on the road this Memorial Day weekend

Virginia

FILE – This Dec. 12, 2018, file photo shows traffic on the Hollywood Freeway in Los Angeles. President Donald Trump’s is expected to mark a win in his two-year fight to gut one of the United States’ single-biggest efforts against climate change, relaxing ambitious Obama-era vehicle mileage standards and raising the ceiling on damaging fossil fuel emissions for years to come. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) – This Memorial Day, Virginia State Police predicts that traffic volumes won’t be high this holiday weekend as in past years.

But as traffic begins to increase as portions of the state have transitioned to phase 1 of the governor’s “Forward Virginia” plan, it is important to remain vigilant.

With more people taking advantage of the lifted restrictions, Virginia State Police reminds all drivers of the importance and necessity of exercising safe and legal driving practices.

“Because of the lighter traffic during the COVID-19 pandemic, state police troopers have witnessed an alarming uptick in the number of excessive speed violations. As a result, troopers will be stepping up their presence and enforcement during the holiday weekend in an effort to increase motorists’ compliance of traffic laws and decrease the reckless speeds and aggressive driving,” said Virginia State Police Superintendent Col. Gary T. Settle.

According to statistics counting periods for both the 2019 and 2018 Memorial Day weekends, 11 individuals died and 708 others were injured due to traffic crashes on Virginia’s highways, officials said.

In addition, Virginia State Police remind drivers of Virginia’s “Move Over” law, which requires motorists to move over when approaching a vehicle stopped alongside the road that has flashing red, blue or amber lights.

VSP will be increasing patrols for the holiday weekend.

Starting Friday, May 22 state police will join law enforcement around the country for Operation C.A.R.E., a state-sponsored, national program intended to reduce crashes, fatalities, and injuries due to impaired driving, speed and failing to wear a seat belt. 

This will continues through midnight Monday, May 25.

For more information on traffic patterns and 2019 Memorial Day weekend crash statistics, click here.


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