HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - With millions of Americans expected to take a road trip over the next few days, the Mississippi Highway Patrol will be out in full force. Officials said all troopers will be on the job this Memorial Day weekend, looking for drunk drivers and other violators.
While no one likes to come upon a roadblock when they're in a hurry to get to their destination, troopers said check points are needed during heavy traffic times like Memorial Day weekend.
AAA estimates more than 36 million Americans will travel at least 50 miles from home during the Memorial Day holiday weekend, and most of them will be driving.
"As you can see, we've got an increased volume of traffic today," said MHP Lt. Johnny Poulos. "We're looking for that all through the weekend all the way to Memorial Day. That's why we're asking people to please stay focused on driving and please make it safely to your destination."
To help you reach your destination safely, troopers said obey the speed limit, stay a proper distance from the car in front of you and pull over if you need to send or read a text or email. They said make sure everyone in the vehicle is buckled up.
"In a high speed rollover when you're ejected 30 to 40 feet in the air and you come down on the asphalt at 80 miles an hour, the human body cannot take that kind of trauma. That's why we have a lot of loss of life due to ejections. That can be taken care of with that simple little click," Poulos said.
One way law enforcement tries to keep drivers safe during high traffic times is by conducting safety checkpoints.
"We're going to have the dreaded check points in place that a lot of people look at as an inconvenience when you're traveling," said Poulos. "It's an important tool that we use not only to get impaired drivers off the road; we have people to come through that are arrested who are wanted. We actually confiscate drugs at these checkpoints. "
Officials said if you run into a roadblock, you can make the process go by a little faster if you have your identification ready when the officer approaches your vehicle.