During last year’s 78-hour Christmas travel period, Georgia recorded 1,948 traffic crashes that injured 809 people and killed 11. This year’s Christmas travel period ends at midnight Sunday.
Likewise, the New Year’s holiday travel period, which starts this year on Dec. 30 at 6 p.m. and comes to an end at midnight Jan. 2, 2011, last year saw 2,083 crashes, 789 injuries and 11 deaths in the state, according to the DPS, which used data from the Crash Reporting Unit at the Georgia Department of Transportation.
Georgia State Patrol troopers and officers with the Motor Carrier Compliance Division will be patrolling not only interstates but also state highways, said DPS Commissioner Col. Bill Hitchens in a release.
“Last year, during the two holiday periods, the majority of fatal crashes occurred on state highways, county roads and city streets,” said Hitchens, “so we will balance our enforcement efforts between the secondary roads and the interstates.”
Asked whether the Griffin Police Department will have additional officers patrolling during the holiday travel periods, Chief Frank Strickland said, “We will be operating our normal schedule, which always requires a high level of visibility in the city on a daily basis.”
State troopers, meanwhile, will conduct road checks throughout the holiday periods but will also execute concentrated patrols, said Hitchens.
“Impaired drivers and people not using their safety equipment will be our top priorities,” he said, reminding drivers to always wear their seat belts, restrain their children properly and maintain a safe distance behind the vehicle ahead.