Busy travel weekend expected for Thanksgiving; state troopers prepare

HARTFORDAAA is anticipating the highest Thanksgiving travel volume in more than a decade and state police are prepared.

Connecticut State Police plan to have more troopers out to patrol the state roads and major highways. Beginning at midnight, Wednesday, state police will add more troopers on the roads throughout the entire weekend.

The focus for state police will be aggressive, unsafe and drunk drivers.

This year, state police said there have been 254 deaths on Connecticut roads. The goal for troopers is to keep the deadly number from rising.

Connecticut State Trooper Garreth Ollivierre told FOX61 during a ride along, he believes the week of Thanksgiving is when there are the most accidents on state roads.

Troopers plan to be more visible to assure people obey the speed limit and are not distracted.

“You have a lot more distractions now with driving, people are on their phones, people are listening to music really loud, people have earphones in,” Trooper Olliverre said. “It reduces their attention span on what's going on, on the road.”

Police ask that you obey the “Move Over Law,” and if you see an emergency vehicle you move to the right to help them speed up response time.

According to AAA, more than 2 million New Englanders are set to travel, 87 percent of which will be hitting the roads.

The Connecticut Department of Transportation is also taking part in "Click it Or Ticket", a high visibility campaign that will run through November 27th. State and local police will be making sure all passengers are wearing seat belts. Fines start at a minimum of $92 for first time offenders.

State police will also conduct DUI roving patrols and checkpoints during the hours of about 6 p.m. to 2 a.m.

In 2016, from November 23-27, state police handed out 896 speeding violations, 311 seatbelt violations and 2,503 other hazardous violations which includes unsafe lane change, cell phone usage, etc. During that time, 51 people were arrested for DUI. In total, 392 accidents were investigated and one resulted in a fatality.