State police step up enforcement this Labor Day weekend

With more than 35 million drivers expected to travel across the United States this Labor Day weekend, Connecticut State Police are concentrating enforcement efforts on drunk driving, speeding, seatbelt violations, and distracted driving.

State police remind motorists to expect heavy traffic, exercise caution, allow extra time to reach their destination, don’t text and drive, set GPS destinations prior to traveling, and use a hands-free device when talking on mobile devices while driving.

This holiday weekend, troopers will utilize both traditional and nontraditional state police vehicles to search for reckless and intoxicated drivers, man sobriety checkpoints, increase roving patrols, and utilize the State Police Breath Alcohol Testing Mobile Unit.

Troop G, which covers lower Fairfield County, will have roving patrols on Routes 8, 15, 25 and Interstate 95 on Sunday, Sept. 4, and Monday, Sept. 5.

"On a first offense, an ignition interlock device can be installed on your vehicle if you are arrested for DWI, and your driver’s license is suspended," according to a Connecticut State Police press release.

As of Sunday, Sept. 4, Connecticut State Police already arrested 31 drunk drivers.

Anyone who sees a suspected drunk driver or hazardous driver should call 911.

Last Labor Day weekend, state police arrested 45 drunk drivers, issued 1,930 speeding violations, and investigated 336 accidents — three of which were fatal and 58 of which were with injuries.

Extended enforcement

State police enforcement efforts will continue into next week, as more than half-a-million children continue to return to school across Connecticut, according to the press release.

Wilton students return to school Tuesday, Sept. 6.

Troopers remind all drivers to be especially vigilant watching for pedestrians during the before- and after-school hours, and that Connecticut state law mandates that drivers stop for school buses that have their flashing red warning lights activated.

Failure to obey this law puts children at great risk and carries a penalty for drivers, starting at $465 for a first offense.