PIKESVILLE, Md. (WJZ) — Maryland State Police will be on extra alert for impaired, distracted or aggressive drivers this Labor Day weekend.

Beginning Thursday, trooper from 23 barracks will be on patrol in order to motorists get to their holiday destinations safely.

“[Troopers] will focus enforcement efforts on impaired driving, aggressive driving, speeding, distracted driving and other violations that often contribute to highway tragedies,” officials said in a release.

State police will also support other agencies to help arrange detours if there’s a crash and with patrols.

According to the Maryland Department of Transportation Highway Safety Office, an average of 145 people died from impaired driving crashes, 159 died from distracted driving crashes and 32 from aggressive driving crashes annually from 2014-2018 in the state.

An average of 2,124 people were injured by impaired drivers, 17,908 were injured as a result of distracted driving and 1,550 were injured by aggressive drivers in Maryland.

Motorists are reminded they can report dangerous drivers traveling on Maryland interstates by safely dialing #77 on their cell phone and providing the nearest State Police barrack a description of the vehicle, location and direction of travel.

If you are attending a Labor Day gathering:

  • Designate your sober driver in advance and give that person your car keys.
  • If you’re planning on driving, avoid drinking.
  • Consider using public transportation, call a taxi or use a ride-share service if you don’t have a sober driver.
  • Don’t let a friend drive if you think they are impaired.
  • If you see someone who you believe is driving impaired, call police.
  • Always buckle up.
  • Don’t text, use a cellphone that is not hands-free or drive distracted.

If you are hosting a Labor Day gathering:

  • Remember, you can be held liable if someone you served alcohol to ends up in an impaired-driving crash.
  • Serve plenty of food and non-alcoholic beverages
  • Ensure sober drivers or alternative modes of transportation are set up in advance for guest who are planning to drink alcoholic beverages.
  • Have contact information for local taxi companies readily available.
  • Take away the keys from anyone who is thinking of driving impaired.

CBS Baltimore Staff

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