South Carolina Highway Patrol officers are working with their counterparts in neighboring states to keep roads safe during the holiday travel season.
The “Hands Across the Border” enforcement operation includes cooperation from the highway patrols and local law enforcement agencies in North Carolina and Georgia.
“Leading into the holiday season, Thanksgiving travel is one of the biggest travel times of the year, we’re partnering with other state agencies and we’re going to go as a team effort to try and reduce some of these traffic fatalities,” Lance Cpl. David Jones said.
Jones said the troopers will be focusing on DUIs, distracted driving, speeders and seatbelt violations. He said drivers violating South Carolina law will not get away with it when they cross the state line.
“We have these partnerships so we know the troopers in North Carolina. We know the troopers in Georgia,” he said. “It’s easy for us to switch a channel on the radio and notify those troopers just across the state line and let them know this vehicle is coming at them at a high rate of speed and to let them be on the lookout.”
Jones said troopers don’t want to work fatal traffic collisions.
“Every year we see where troopers are going around and knocking on doors and notifying families that their loved one lost their life in a traffic accident and we want to stop that knock,” he said. “We don’t want to knock on any more doors.”
Next week, Jones said a new class of officers graduate from the state academy and go on patrol. With an expected 730,000 drivers hitting the road for the Thanksgiving holiday, Jones said use common sense behind the wheel.
“Speed, distraction, seat belts and alcohol seem to center around a lot of these fatal crashes so we want to stop the knock,” he said. “We don’t want to notify any families this holiday period that a loved one’s been lost.”