Georgia Highway Patrol increasing patrols during Fourth of July weekend

(WFXG) - Aside from fireworks and barbecues, the Fourth of July weekend means heavy traffic.

The Georgia State Patrol will be aggressively enforcing the roadways throughout the weekend.

Sgt. Marc Meeler with the Georgia Highway Patrol explained what they are doing to increase their presence during the weekend.

"Almost every trooper in the state will be patrolling on our travel days," said Meeler.

The Fourth of July weekend technically starts on July 2 at 6 p.m. and runs until midnight on July 5. That 72 hour period will include road blocks and safety checkpoints around the Augusta area.

"We will set up road blocks and road safety checkpoints, we will have those out and our focus will be on catching impaired drivers," said Meeler. "On a safety checkpoint when you come through the checkpoint it will be very quick and ask for your drivers license and have you on your way as long as your legal."

The Fourth of July weekend is one of the most dangerous weekends of the year, especially for drunk driving. Last year, the Georgia State Patrol made almost 300 DUI arrests and issued over 7,000 citations. Meeler urges to plan your ride situation ahead and choose a designated driver if necessary.

"But from an enforcement aspect, our focus will be on patrolling, looking for signs of impaired driving, weaving, failure to maintain lane, enforcing speed laws and also our sobriety checkpoints we will be establishing throughout the greater Augusta area," said Meeler.

Before you hit the interstate this weekend, there are a few precautions you can take before getting in your car.

"I think it's very important you want to make sure your vehicle is running properly, check your tires, make sure you have everything you need for a trip in case you have a mechanical breakdown. But ultimately, when you take off, know that it is not a race, slow down drive safely and don't consume alcohol when you drive," said Meeler.


Thanks Jake, and of course the Georgia State Patrol stresses to call 911 this weekend if you spot an impaired driver on the road.