Extra police on the roadways during Labor Day holiday

police lights

Police agencies in the Quad City area as well as across Iowa and Illinois will be on high alert during Labor Day weekend.

Several police departments, including Galesburg and Moline, are enforcing the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign surrounding the Labor Day holiday. Both Galesburg and Moline’s police departments will focus on impaired drivers and seatbelt violators as they patrol the roads from midnight – 3 a.m., which police say is the “deadliest time of day.”

“The numbers do not lie. To help prevent fatalities on Illinois roadways, we are stepping up our late-night enforcement efforts, making sure impaired drivers are off the road and motorists are buckled up,” said Sgt. Tim DeVrieze with the Moline Police Department. “If you drive impaired or unbuckled at night, we will find you and arrest you or give you a ticket.”

In addition to local departments, the Illinois State Police planned to beef-up their patrol from Friday, August 29 – Tuesday, September 2. They will be focusing on speeders, those driving under the influence, seatbelt violators, and distracted drivers.

“Since 2007, state police have been focused on the Fatal 4 mission striving to reduce the number of fatalities,” said Illinois State Police Director Hiram Grau. “Troopers statewide will be enforcing the Fatal 4 traffic laws, and those motorists who choose to violate the traffic laws could encounter tragic consequences or even face jail time,” added Grau.

According to a statement from the Illinois State Police, troopers planned to “be on heightened alert monitoring intelligence from the Statewide Terrorism Intelligence Center for suspicious vehicles, special alerts, and any criminal activity crossing state lines.”

The Iowa State Police will also have extra troopers on patrol, according to Trooper Dan Loussaert. State Police planned to heighten their patrol from Monday, August 25 – Sunday, September 7. In addition to looking for speeders and drivers following too closely to other vehicles, Iowa State Police will be enforcing the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign.

“Driving drunk or drugged is a life-threatening undertaking not only for those who do it but for all of those who use Iowa’s roadways,” said Patrick Hoye, Bureau Chief of the Governor’s Traffic Safety Bureau.

According to the Iowa Department of Transportation, there were four fatalities during the three-day Labor Day Holiday in 2013; one was alcohol related.  In the past five years, crash data has shown that August and September are the deadliest months of the year.

To forewarn drivers looking for alternative ways to get around, the Metrolink will not be an option, as the service is closed Monday, September 1. It will resume Tuesday, September 2.

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