Holiday weekend hard on drivers, record number of travelers keep roads packed

Holiday weekend hard on drivers, record number of travelers keep roads packed
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A record-breaking 48.9 million Americans took to the roads over the 4th of July weekend, many of those travelers returning home Sunday.

Local law enforcement urges drivers to slow down and stay safe.

Plenty of cars zoom past on the highway, returning home from the holiday weekend, and drivers like Jim Lowman are taking note.

“Just people trying to pass with cars coming and stuff, driving kinda fast. They don’t pay attention most of the time. They’re just in a hurry to get somewhere,” observed Lowman.

Missouri Highway Patrol troopers say speed was a problem with holiday travelers, along with accidents.

Troop D reports 53 car crashes with 27 injuries and one fatality. There were also 14 DWI arrests.

Those numbers could go up as the counting period runs until midnight Sunday.

It’s not just fast drivers, but more of them. AAA reports nearly 2 million more drivers than last year, and the roads have felt extra perilous for Lowman.

“You know, it’s kinda rough.”

July is one of the deadliest months for car crashes with so many people taking advantage of summer vacations, but officials have some tips to make sure you get where you need to go safely.

“Don’t put yourself in a situation where you find yourself adopting poor driving habits just to make up time because that can be dangerous. It can be costly with citations, things like that, but mostly it can be costly with respect to being injured or killed,” said David Groves, Cherokee County Sheriff.

Lowman agrees, urging drivers to slow down, buckle up and focus on the road.

“It’s not worth it. It’s not worth losing your life over something like that.”

8 fatal crashes have been reported statewide, so far.

The waters have also been dangerous. Missouri State Highway Patrol reports 7 cases of boating while intoxicated resulting in 3 boating crashes.

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