DPS beefs up law enforcement over 4th of July weekend

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) Texas Highway Patrol (THP) will launch two road safety campaigns over the holiday weekend in search of people violating Friday the 1st traffic laws July to Monday, July 4.

“Our nation’s freedom is worth celebrating, and I encourage everyone to do so responsibly,” DPS Director Steven McCraw said. “That includes obeying our state’s traffic laws and being courteous to other drivers on the roads, so everyone can have a great vacation.”

Operation Holiday will run from July 2-4 and will target drivers who break traffic laws, including those who are speeding, not wearing their seat belts or driving while intoxicated. During the 2021 campaign, 55,776 citations and warnings were issued. This includes 17,376 speeding citations and warnings; 2006 for people driving without a seat belt or child safety seat; and 1,632 for people driving without insurance. In addition, 298 people were arrested for drunk driving, 280 felony arrests and 145 absconding arrests.

Operation CARE (Crash Awareness Reduction Effort) will run from July 1 to July 4, and focuses on reducing crashes and condition violations. Move, slow down right. From January 1 to June 7, 2022, there were 4,135 Move, slow down offences. The law requires all drivers to slow down when police, fire, emergency medical services, Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) vehicles and tow trucks are stopped on the side of the road with their emergency lights activated .

DPS offers the following safety tips for people driving during the 4
July holidays:

  • Do not drink and drive.
    Make alternate plans if you consume alcohol.
  • Move or slow down
    for police, fire, EMS, TxDOT and tow trucks stopped on the side
    the road with the hazard warning lights on.
  • Buckle up
    everyone in the vehicle — it’s the law.
  • To slow down,
    especially in bad weather, heavy traffic, unknown areas or construction
    areas.
  • Eliminate
    Entertainment
    driving, including the use of mobile devices.
    Texas law prohibits the use of wireless handheld devices to read, write, or
    send an electronic message unless the vehicle is stationary. If you use
    a navigation device or application, ask a passenger to use it so that you can keep
    your eyes on the road.
  • Drive safely,
    as vacation travel can present additional challenges.
  • On multi-lane roads, use
    the left lane for overtaking only
    . Not only is it courteous conduct
    and avoid obstructing traffic, Texas law requires slower traffic to stay at
    right and to use the left lane for overtaking only (when signaled).
  • Do not cut in front
    big trucks
    , and try not to brake too quickly in front of them. They
    cannot maneuver as easily as passenger vehicles and pickup trucks.
  • Whether you can Direct it,
    Erase that
    : If you are involved in an accident without injury and your
    vehicle can be moved, clear traffic lanes to minimize the impact on traffic.
    Leaving vehicles in a traffic lane increases traffic jams and departures
    those involved with an increased risk of damage or secondary sinking. On
    certain highways, if you do not move your vehicle when it is safe to do so,
    it is against the law.
  • Keep Texas
    Roadside assistance
    number stored in your phone. Dial 1-800-525-5555
    for any type of assistance. The number can also be found on the back of a
    Texas driver’s license.
  • Check your vehicle
    to ensure it is properly maintained and always make sure your cargo is
    secured.
  • Report road
    danger or anything suspicious to the nearest law enforcement department.
  • Monitor the weather and
    road conditions
    wherever you travel. For road conditions
    and closures in Texas, visit Drive
    Texas.

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