During the Thanksgiving holiday period, millions of people across the US will be traveling the roads eager to spend time with family and friends. According to NHTSA, Thanksgiving is one of the busiest travel times of the year, and unfortunately more people on the roadways means the potential for more vehicle crashes. Troopers in Louisiana will be focused on reducing the number of incidents on our highways in an effort to help people get to their destinations safely.
Last year in Louisiana during the Thanksgiving holiday period (November 22-27), there were over 550 crashes involving injury, and 15 people were killed in fatal crashes. Of those fatal crashes, nearly half involved impaired drivers. In an effort to decrease the number of crashes and keep our roads safe, the Louisiana State Police will be proactively patrolling our state’s highways during the holiday travel period. Troopers will focus on impaired driving, aggressive driving, and occupant protection.
Troopers will have a “zero tolerance” policy, and those caught driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs will be arrested. Motorists should know that alcohol has many effects on the body. Alcohol can impair visual ability, alter sense of time and space, impair fine motor skills needed to operate a motor vehicle, and decrease reaction times. Just one drink may cause these effects.
Motorists are urged to contact the nearest LSP Troop by dialing *LSP (*577) if they observe others driving in unsafe manners – especially those who appear to be operating under the influence. Thanksgiving travelers can access real time information about road conditions, construction activities, and other critical incidents by visiting the LaDOTD 511 Traveler Information System website at www.511la.org. Information can also be easily found by dialing 511.
With the increase in Thanksgiving holiday traffic, motorists are urged to plan ahead. Designate a sober driver, ensure all occupants are properly restrained, and exercise patience on our roadways. By doing this we can help ensure everyone has something to be thankful for this Thanksgiving!