AUSTIN – As Texans prepare for the Thanksgiving holiday, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) offers tips for safe travel and calls on residents to celebrate responsibly.
“The Thanksgiving weekend invariably means increased traffic on roadways, and DPS is reminding Texans that we all have a responsibility to help make the roads safe for everyone,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “Our Troopers will be on the lookout for dangerous drivers who disregard the law – at the same time, we urge drivers to use extra caution while traveling and to always drive sober.”
DPS troopers will be patrolling Texas around-the-clock during the holiday weekend looking for drunk drivers, speeders, seat belt violators and other drivers who are endangering themselves and others.
During the Thanksgiving weekend in 2015, DPS troopers issued 28,835 traffic citations and warnings for a variety of violations, including speeding, no insurance and seat belt/child safety seat usage. DPS patrols also resulted in 219 driving while intoxicated arrests, 127 fugitive arrests and 94 felony arrests during the same time period.
DPS offers the following tips for safe travel during the Thanksgiving holiday:
- Don’t drink and drive. Designate a driver or take a cab.
- Slow down – especially in bad weather, construction areas and heavy traffic.
- Eliminate distractions, including the use of mobile devices.
- Buckle up everyone in the vehicle – it’s the law.
- Slow down or move over for police, fire, EMS and Texas Department of Transportation vehicles and tow trucks that are stopped on the side of the road with emergency lights activated – it’s the law. Also, show the same courtesy to fellow drivers stopped along the road if it is safe to do so.
- Don’t drive fatigued – get plenty of rest before trips or take breaks as needed.
- Drive defensively, as holiday travel may present additional challenges.
- Make sure your vehicle is properly maintained before your trip begins.
Keep your pets safe and happy this Thanksgiving and into the holidays. Update ID chips, and be careful what you feed them.
Don’t forget to give your house some love this Thanksgiving – but do it safely. Keep everyone under your roof healthy and safe.