Drivers in Texas will notice an increase in Texas Highway Patrol Trooper enforcement between Wednesday and Sunday, with an emphasis on looking for people not wearing seat belts, driving while intoxicated and speeding, among other traffic violations. Photo from Metro Creative
DPS to increase enforcement during Thanksgiving holiday
The Texas Department of Public Safety will increase enforcement during the Thanksgiving holiday.
Drivers in Texas will notice an increase in Texas Highway Patrol Trooper enforcement between Wednesday and Sunday. DPS said Troopers will be looking for people not wearing seat belts, driving while intoxicated, speeding and failing to follow the state’s Move Over, Slow Down law, among other traffic violations.
“As we head into a busy holiday season, we must remember to make safety the number one priority,” DPS Director Steven McCraw said. “Obey all traffic laws, don’t drink and drive, put your phones down behind the wheel, and look out for each other. The message is the same every year, but it’s a message that can save lives.”
DPS, which participates in the nationwide Operation CARE initiative for the Thanksgiving holiday, issued 36,523 warnings and citations during last year’s Thanksgiving holiday. DPS stated that 3,306 were cited or warned for speeding, 789 for driving without insurance, 377 for seat belt and child seat violations and 170 violations for Move Over, Slow Down violations.
DPS said 225 felony arrests were made during last year’s enforcement efforts, including 138 DWI arrests and 84 fugitive arrests.
DPS provides the following safety tips for the Thanksgiving holiday:
- Don’t drink and drive. Plan ahead.
- Move Over or Slow Down for police, fire, EMS, Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) vehicles and tow trucks stopped on the side of the road with emergency lights activated. DPS asks drivers to show the same courtesy to fellow drivers stopped on the side of the road.
- Buckle up.
- Slow down, especially while driving during bad weather, heavy traffic and through unfamiliar areas or construction zones.
- Eliminate distractions while driving, including the use of mobile devices. Texas law prohibits the use of portable wireless devices to read, write or send an electronic message unless the vehicle is stopped.
- Have a passenger operate a navigation device or app.
- Dial 1-800-525-5555 for any type of assistance. The Texas Roadside Assistance number can also be found on the back of a Texas Drivers License.
- Drive defensively.
- Allow plenty of time to reach a destination and don’t drive fatigued.
- Use the left lane for passing only on multi-lane roads. When posted Texas law requires slower traffic to keep to the right and to use the left lane for passing only.
- Don’t cut in front of large trucks, and try not to brake quickly in front of them. They can’t maneuver as easily as passenger vehicles and pickup trucks.
- If you can Steer It, Clear It: If you are involved in a non-injury crash and your vehicle can be moved, clear the traffic lanes to minimize traffic impact. Leaving vehicles in a traffic lane increases traffic congestion and leaves those involved with an increased risk of harm or a secondary wreck. On some highways, if you don’t move your vehicle when it’s safe to do so, it’s against the law.
- Check your vehicle to make sure it’s properly maintained and ensure cargo is secure.
- Report road hazards or anything suspicious to the nearest law enforcement agency.
- Monitor weather and road conditions wherever you are traveling. For road conditions and closures in Texas, visit Drive Texas at https://drivetexas.org.