Oklahoma Highway Patrol urges Labor Day safety

Oklahoma Highway Patrol urges Labor Day safety

LAWTON, OK (KSWO) - Labor Day weekend is here and many Oklahomans are hitting the road to get away and celebrate the unofficial end to summer.

A recent AAA survey shows that more than 400 thousand Oklahomans are expected to travel 50 miles or more over the next three days. More than 95 percent are expected drive to their holiday destinations, in large part due continued low gas prices.

Everyone enjoys getting a nice three day weekend, but Labor Day also signals one of the last chances Oklahomans get to have a little summer fun before fall moves in.

"We're going on post, having a barbecue with my parents and enjoying the weekend," Tiffany Gomme said.

"We're having a family party up at the lake, my son and daughter and law are here from Killeen, so it's a  good chance to get everyone together," Dawn Gibson said.

The lake and barbecues are hot spots this weekend, but people also tend to travel simply to see family or old friends. No matter what you're doing, the idea behind a labor day trip is pretty self-explanatory.

"Whatever comes, comes. That's what the vacation is about. Just get out and relax and see what goes on," Harlin Hamilton said.

With all the extra travel comes more danger, as Oklahoma Highway Patrol says they are expecting the highways to stay busy and that officers will be out in full force.

"We want everyone on the road to be safe," Trooper Jake Mackey said. "A lot of incidents happen while you're texting and driving or on any other electronic device. If we see someone texting and driving we are going to pull them over and we are going to issue them a citation."

With everyone out and about, Oklahoma Highway Patrol is urging those to be particularly careful if they are consuming alcohol.

"Basically, if you drink and drive, you're going to catch you and you're going to go to jail," Mackey said.

It's not just drinking and driving that is a problem. Oklahoma Highway Patrol said it is extremely important for you to be as safe as you can in general when you hit the road.

"Sometimes it's a matter of life and death," Mackey said. "If people will follow basic safety rules, like following distance and wearing their seat belts, it improves safety a great deal."

Tipsy Tow will be available this weekend for those who have a bit too much to drink. Simply call the (800) AAA - HELP and they'll come get you and your car home safely.

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol is also urging anyone who sees unsafe driving over the weekend to call 911 or star-55 to report it.