Labor Day to bring more motorists to interstates; drivers reminded to stay safe

Local News

PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — Labor Day weekend will bring many motorists out to interstates and highways with many Americans traveling for the holiday.

According to the National Safety Council, Labor Day is the third deadliest holiday for motorists to drive, behind the 4th of July and Memorial Day. This year, the NSC estimates nearly 400 people will lose their life in a fatal crash.

In 2018, 38% of fatal crashes involved alcohol-impairment over the Labor Day Weekend. Peoria County Sheriff Brian Asbell said his office is partnering with other area law enforcement to stop impaired driving and help save lives.

“Impaired driving kills more than 10,000 people in the United States each year,” Asbell said. “Please plan ahead for a safe ride home before you leave the house. It truly is a matter of life or death.”

Asbell says although celebrations might look different this year, the potential for injury or death is still the same. With millions of Americans taking to the roads, Asbell expects to see more motorists than usual.

“To combat that and make sure everyone is safe, we’re going be having extra patrol as well as other law enforcement agencies,” Asbell said.

Sheriff Asbell said his deputies will be looking for the fatal fours; drunk driving, speeding, people not wearing seat-belts and distracted driving.

“With an extended weekend, we just want everyone to be safe and arrive at their destinations safely,” Asbell said.

Traveler, John Smith and his fiancee are not worried about the increase in traffic.

“Not really, it doesn’t seem to get too bad on the interstate, not when we leave,” Smith said. “We try to leave and avoid it the best we can.”

Smith said he is not worried about party-goers driving on the roads.

“Not anymore than normal. I’m more worried about deer,” Smith said.

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