SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Labor Day typically marks the end of the summer travel period, but 2020 has been anything but typical. Although many Californians may forego the long weekend road trip this year for a staycation, the California Highway Patrol (CHP) will still implement its Labor Day Maximum Enforcement Period (MEP).
The CHP advises all drivers to take precautions that keep themselves safe behind the wheel and protect others – such as buckling up, avoiding distractions, adhering to a safe and legal speed, and never driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Last year during the Labor Day holiday weekend, 45 people were killed in crashes throughout California. Nearly three-quarters of all the vehicle occupants killed within CHP jurisdiction were not wearing a seat belt. In addition, the CHP made more than 1,000 arrests for driving under the influence during the 78-hour enforcement effort in 2019.
“Getting behind the wheel of a vehicle while under the influence is extremely dangerous, not only to the person driving but to everyone on the road with them,” said CHP Commissioner Warren Stanley. “If you travel this holiday weekend, make smart decisions and drive to arrive.”
To help keep California’s roadways safe and assist motorists this weekend, all available CHP officers will be on patrol for the MEP, which begins at 6:01 p.m. on Friday, September 4, and continues through 11:59 p.m. on Monday, September 7.
This year, in addition to the MEP, the Office of Community Outreach and Media Relations produced a powerful public service announcement on the devastating impact driving under the influence had on a CHP officer and his family. You can watch the documentary called Falling here: www.chp.social
Over the past few years, the CHP increased its training efforts to detect impaired drivers. All CHP officers and sergeants have received additional training in the detection of impaired drivers. California also has the highest number of personnel trained as Drug Recognition Experts (DRE) in the nation. For the Labor Day MEP, DREs will be on duty throughout the state.
The CHP also reminds Californians to take safety precautions recommended by the California Department of Public Health to protect themselves, their families, and others from COVID-19 including physical distancing, wearing a face-covering if you go out in public, washing your hands for 20 seconds, and remaining at home if you become sick.
The mission of the CHP is to provide the highest level of Safety, Service, and Security.