BALTIMORE (WJZ) — As many Marylanders will hit the roads Monday, many headed back home after a weekend getaway, officials are seeing to it that those commuters stay safe for everyone.
State police are on alert, prepping for heavy labor day traffic and especially drivers who’ve had too much to drink.
As summer winds down, traffic ramps up. “We’re expecting to see about a 1% increase in traffic volumes when compared to last year,” says John Sales, MDTA.
More than 1.8 million drivers are expected to use Maryland roads this labor day weekend. Maryland state police now tasked with keeping all of those commuters safe.
“Maryland State Police will be focusing on aggressive driving, speed, occupant restraint, and most importantly, our DUI laws,” said Sargeant DaVaughn Parker with Maryland State Police.
As part of their “Towards Zero Deaths” campaign, police will have extra patrols and sobriety checkpoints in place.
“We will have zero tolerance for drunk drivers,” said Sgt. Parker.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than two percent of Marylanders admit to driving after drinking too much, more than the 1.9 percent national average.
For travelers like Bonnie Benedetta, it’s not worth the risk. “I’m going to be careful, myself. Limit, wait, that kind of thing,” she said.
If you’re headed home on Monday, AAA says give yourself some extra time, and pack your patience.
“Make sure everyone in your car is buckled up, that you’re not driving distracted, that you’re not driving aggressively, paying attention to the rules of the road,” said Ragina Averella, AAA Mid-Atlantic spokesperson.
Making sure everyone gets back home safely, the Maryland Transportation Authority recommends driving at off-peak hours like early in the morning and after dinner time.
More than 35-million people nationwide are expected to travel for this holiday weekend.