Expect heavy police presence this holiday weekend.

May 24, 2019

Expect heavy police presence this holiday weekend.

By Allison Scarbrough, Editor.

HART – In an effort to keep motorists safe this busy Memorial Day Weekend, local police and law enforcement statewide are beefing up road patrols.

“Historically, we have always beefed up patrols for our summer holiday weekends,” said Oceana County Sheriff Craig Mast. That means that all of the sheriff’s road deputies will be working this weekend, and some will be putting in overtime to enhance enforcement.

There will be a dozen Oceana deputies on the roads this weekend, including an added patrol car in Golden Township. The added patrol car in the busy tourist area, which includes the popular Silver Lake Sand Dunes, is possible through funding from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Golden Township, Mast said. It normally stays in service all summer, beginning Memorial Day Weekend and continuing past Labor Day.

Michigan State Police troopers from the Hart post will also beef up enforcement this weekend, said Sgt. Charles Hockanson. “There will be extra troopers on the roads,” Hockanson said, focusing on traffic violations, drunk driving and drugged driving.

Both law enforcement officials stress the importance of safe driving this weekend and always. Officers will be on the look out for seat belt violators and distracted drivers.

Statewide, MSP troopers will take part in three traffic safety initiatives – Operation CARE (Crash Awareness and Reduction Efforts), Click it or Ticket and the 6 State Trooper Project – in an effort to reduce or eliminate serious injury and fatal traffic crashes, states an MSP oppress release.

“The MSP wants drivers to make safe driving decisions this holiday weekend,” said Col. Joe Gasper, director of the MSP. “It takes just seconds to fasten your seat belt, opt for a designated driver or even open an app to use a rideshare service.”

MSP’s official Memorial Day enforcement period began at midnight Friday, May 24, and ends at noon Monday, May 27. “Last year, 15 fatal traffic crashes resulted in 19 deaths over the Memorial Day weekend – the most fatalities over the Memorial Day holiday weekend since 2014,” the press release states.

Operation CARE was formed in 1977 to deter three causes of highway fatalities – aggressive driving, impaired driving and failure to use occupant restraints.

Click It or Ticket is a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) campaign aimed at increasing the use of seat belts, which can reduce the risk of serious injury or death in a crash by 45 percent.

The 6-State Trooper Project is a multi-state law enforcement partnership among the state police and patrol agencies of Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

“We’re hoping for a successful weekend for our local businesses,” said Mast, “and a safe one for emergency personnel, residents and visitors.”

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