Indiana State Police stepping up Thanksgiving holiday patrols

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By The Staff

JASPER - In an effort to prevent injuries and fatalities on Indiana's roadways this week, the Indiana State Police and more than 250 other law enforcement agencies throughout the state are participating in a Safe Family Travel enforcement blitz.

The effort continues through Sunday and troopers will have the opportunity to work overtime to ensure safe travel during this dangerous holiday travel time.

Troopers will direct their enforcement efforts toward impaired driving, speeding, following too closely and other aggressive driving behavior. In addition, troopers will strictly enforce seatbelt and child-restraint laws.

During the 2008 Thanksgiving holiday period, 15 people lost their lives in Indiana traffic crashes. More than 66 percent of those fatalities were alcohol related.

Additionally, in more than two-thirds of the fatal collisions that occurred around Thanksgiving, the people killed were not wearing seat belts.

Although overall seat belt use is up nationwide, many people still refuse to buckle up. Studies from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration have consistently shown that wearing a seat belt increases one's chances of surviving a crash by more than 50 percent.

Holiday Travel Safety Tips

• Always buckle up.

• Get plenty of rest before setting out on a long trip.

• Observe and obey all speed limits.

• Allow plenty of time to reach your holiday travel destinations.

• Don't drink and drive.

• Avoid using the cell phone while driving.

• If you see an emergency vehicle stopped on the side of the roadway, remember to move over and slow down.