Police stepping up their presence for Labor Day weekend travel - WNEM TV 5

Police stepping up their presence for Labor Day weekend travel

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While most of Mid-Michigan has gotten ready for the Labor Day weekend, Michigan State Police have been preparing too.

Their goal? To keep drivers safe.

“We're looking primarily for speeders, because speed is a major factor in a lot of fatal crashes, as well as distracted driving, particularly people who are texting while driving,” said Trooper Troy Meder.

The men and women in blue aren't the only ones who will be working over-time this weekend. Operation CARE started in the late '70s by both Michigan and Indiana state police.

Now, all 50 states are involved, which makes it one of the longest-running traffic safety initiatives in the country.

“It's just a matter of everybody being reminded it IS an Operation CARE weekend, and we should know where our duties are on these weekends,” Meder said.

According to MSP statistics, deadly accidents over Labor Day weekend are down nearly 25 percent in the past decade.  The goal of Operation CARE is to keep it that way.

“My goal, our goal in general is to make sure we can get through a holiday weekend without any fatal crashes in the state of Michigan,” Meder said.

And, to make sure your vacation starts and ends safely, Meder has some advice.

“There's going to be a lot more cars on the expressway particularly,” Meder said. “You're going to get where you're going when you get there. Trying to speed it along can turn what is a happy, fun weekend, into a tragedy.”

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