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Georgia State Patrol steps up patrols for Fourth of July

CONYERS — With a long holiday weekend, the Georgia State Patrol will be stepping up enforcement to ensure that the celebrations this Fourth of July stay safe and peaceful.

The holiday period is 78 hours long, beginning at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 3, and ending at midnight on Sunday, July 6. During this period, state troopers will be conducting concentrated patrols and road checks throughout the state.

“Troopers will be watching for impaired drivers, seat belt and child restraint violations, and speeders,” said Col. Mark W. McDonough, Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Safety.

Last year, the holiday period was 102 hours long, during which time the GSP investigated 1,150 traffic crashes that resulted in 564 injuries and five fatalities. Additionally, troopers issued 9,849 citations, 18,477 warnings, and made 359 DUI arrests.

The GSP is reminding drivers to exercise caution in holiday travels, no matter how short the trip may be.

“Obey the posted speed limit, check that everyone is wearing a seat belt, and avoid distractions inside your vehicle,” McDonough said. “Careful planning is the key to a safe holiday weekend. Keep safety a priority.”

The Georgia State Patrol is participating in Operation Zero Tolerance, a nationwide crackdown on impaired drivers by law enforcement. The GSP will also be participating in Operation C.A.R.E., or Combined Accident Reduction Effort. This is a nationwide traffic safety initiative among state highway patrols and state police agencies where troopers and officers across the United States and Canada work together during holiday periods to reduce the number of traffic deaths through high visibility patrols and education.