DPS Increases Traffic Enforcement for Labor Day Holiday
AUSTIN – The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) will be joining law enforcement efforts from across the state to increase traffic enforcement during the Labor Day holiday weekend. From Friday, Aug. 31, through Monday, Sept. 3, DPS Troopers will be looking for drivers who violate traffic laws, including impaired drivers, speeders and safety belt violators.
“DPS is committed to protecting travelers on our roadways, and Troopers will be working around-the-clock this Labor Day weekend to keep impaired and dangerous drivers off the road,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “We are urging all drivers to do their part to keep our roads safe by simply obeying Texas traffic laws and driving courteously.”
DPS offers drivers the following tips for enhancing safety on our roads during the Labor Day holiday:
Do not drink and drive. Make alternate travel plans if you are consuming alcohol.
Slow down – especially in bad weather, construction areas, heavy traffic and unfamiliar areas.
Eliminate distractions while driving, including the use of mobile devices. Texas law prohibits using a portable wireless device to read, write or send an electronic message unless the vehicle is stopped.
Buckle up everyone in the vehicle – it’s the law.
Slow down or move over for police, fire, EMS and Texas Department of Transportation vehicles and tow trucks stopped on the side of the road with emergency lights activated – it’s the law. Also, show the same courtesy to fellow drivers stopped along the road.
Drive defensively, as holiday travel may present additional challenges.
Don’t drive fatigued – allow plenty of time to reach your destination.
If you see a road hazard or if you observe anything suspicious, report it to the nearest law enforcement agency.
Before your trip begins, make sure your vehicle is properly maintained and always double check to make sure all cargo is secure.
Monitor weather and road conditions wherever you are traveling. For road conditions/closings in Texas, visit https://drivetexas.org.
As part of Operation CARE (Crash Awareness and Reduction Effort), police agencies across the country will also increase enforcement efforts over the Labor Day holiday weekend.
DPS Ramping Up Move Over/Slow Down Enforcement in Wood County
Tyler – The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) will be enhancing enforcement efforts in Wood County on Friday, August 31, 2018. DPS will be focusing specifically on violations of the state’s Move Over/Slow Down law. These periodic enforcement operations involving DPS Troopers are planned throughout the year at various locations in Texas.
The law, originally passed in 2003, requires motorists to move over or slow down when certain vehicles – including police, fire, EMS, Texas Department of Transportation vehicles and tow trucks – are stopped on the side of the road with emergency lights activated.
“Our Highway Patrol Troopers and other officers risk their lives every day for the people of Texas, and their safety is particularly vulnerable while working on the side of the road, where the slightest mistake by a passing motorist can end in tragedy,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “While our officers are serving and protecting Texans, we’re asking drivers to do their part by adhering to the law – simply move over or slow down.”
Specifically, Texas law states that a driver must either:
Vacate the lane closest to the applicable vehicles stopped on the side of the road (if the road has multiple lanes traveling in the same direction), or
Slow down 20 mph below the speed limit. (If the speed limit is below 25 mph, the driver must slow down to 5 mph.)
Drivers should only move over if they can do so safely and legally; otherwise, they should slow down.
“In addition to complying with the law to protect those who work on the side of the road, we encourage motorists to show the same courtesy to fellow drivers stopped along our roadways. Let’s all get home safely,” said McCraw.
Violations of the law can result in a fine of up to $200; the fine increases to $500 if there is property damage. If violators cause bodily injury, they can be charged with a Class B misdemeanor, resulting in possible jail time and a maximum fine of $2,000.
Preliminary data from 2017 shows that DPS issued more than 10,650 warnings and citations to motorists violating the Move Over/Slow Down law.
Jean M. Dark
Texas Department of Public Safety
Texas Highway Patrol
Staff Sergeant, Media, and Communications