Scott Shenk writes about transportation issues affecting Fredericksburg-area residents.
State police will be out in force during July 4 holiday period
As with other heavily traveled holiday periods, the Virginia State Police will be out in force the rest of the week–from July 4 through Sunday 75 percent of the department’s troopers will be on patrol.
They’ll be looking for scofflaw drivers as well as trying to keep accidents down, especially deadly crashes.
During last year’s July 4 travel period, 14 people died on Virginia roads, according to the state police.
Independence Day is a time when a lot of drinking goes on–and a lot of drinking and driving.
During last year’s five-day holiday stretch, state troopers charged 117 with impaired driving, according to the state police.
And the punishment just got tougher for those caught driving drunk. On July 1 a new law took effect requiring first-time offenders to install an interlock ignition device in their vehicle. The breathalyzer device is wired to the vehicle’s ignition and the driver has to blow into the it before going anywhere. If alcohol is detected the vehicle will not start.
“If you plan to drink, call a cab or ride with a sober friend,” said Col. W. Steven Flaherty, state police superintendent.
Expect plenty of tickets to also be issued for other offenses over the July 4 holiday.
During last year’s July 4 holiday stretch, troopers issued 10,522 speeding tickets and charged 2,805 with reckless driving. They also handed out 869 safety belt violations and issued 343 citations for children not being properly secured in a safety or booster seat.
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