Turkey with a side of patience during the holiday travel in Virginia

Home for the Holidays

FILE – In this Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2011, file photo, cars fill the highway two days before Thanksgiving, in San Diego. The number of Americans hitting the road for Thanksgiving in 2012, is expected to increase slightly from a year ago, according to AAA’s annual Thanksgiving travel forecast released Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012. But they’ll take shorter trips to save on gas and other costs as household budgets remain tight. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)

(WFXR) — The turkeys are cooking and the tables are set, but before you speed off to your family or friends to share in the Thanksgiving holiday, Virginia State Police (VSP) want to remind people to slow down when hitting the roads.

AAA says that 1.4 million Virginians will be traveling, which is 11 percent more than in 2020. While many people will be on the roads, drivers will want to also be patient.

“With traffic on the roads increasing and many people anxious to get to their destination, I encourage all Virginians to be patient. Buckle up and take your time,” said Col. Gary T. Settle, VSP Superintendent. “Your family wants you to arrive safely and in a frame of mind to enjoy all the holiday has to offer. Making sure you are driving the posted speed limit, driving for conditions and wearing your seatbelt are the best ways to stay safe on the road, so you can enjoy the holiday.”

To make sure drivers are getting to their destinations safely, VSP will participate in Operation C.A.R.E — Crash Awareness and Reduction Effort. This initiative falls within the annual “Click It or Ticket” campaign. This program will begin at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 24, and conclude at midnight on Sunday, Nov. 28. During that time there will be an increase in visibility and traffic enforcement efforts.

Last year’s initiative resulted in troopers citing 4,930 speeders and 1,706 reckless drivers statewide. Troopers charged 67 drivers with DUIs of alcohol and/or drugs and cited 498 drivers for failing to buckle up.

During the five-day Thanksgiving holiday period, there were 12 traffic fatalities reported last year and in 2019, eight traffic fatalities were reported.

Troopers also want to remind drivers of the state’s “Move Over” law. It requires drivers to move over when approaching an emergency vehicle stopped alongside the road. It also states that drivers can’t move over, you are required to cautiously pass the emergency vehicle. This law also applies to vehicles equipped with amber lights.

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