RIVERSIDE (CNS) – California Highway Patrol officers will be ramping up operations on highways and roads throughout Riverside County starting Friday, Sept. 4 to catch drunken and drug-impaired drivers, as well as other traffic violators, as part of a Labor Day weekend enforcement campaign.
The CHP’s “maximum enforcement period” will begin at 6 p.m. and will conclude at 11:59 p.m. Monday.
According to the agency, all available officers from the Beaumont, Blythe, Indio, Riverside and Temecula stations will deploy for targeted crackdowns, though officials acknowledged that this holiday weekend probably won’t compare to previous ones because of more people choosing to stay home and off of the roads due to coronavirus-related closures.
During the 2019 Labor Day weekend MEP, CHP officers statewide arrested 1,078 motorists on suspicion of driving under the influence, compared to 1,084 from the same period in 2018. Forty-five people died in wrecks throughout California over Labor Day weekend 2019, according to the agency.
“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,” CHP Commissioner Warren Stanley said. “If you travel this holiday weekend, make smart decisions and drive to arrive.”
Officials said that with most CHP officers and sergeants trained as “drug recognition experts,” they will be better equipped to spot motorists under the influence of marijuana and other drugs.
Speeding violations have surged amid the public health shutdowns, with major increases in the number of tickets written for driving in excess of 100 mph on freeways and highways throughout the Inland Empire, according to law enforcement officials.
The holiday weekend enforcement campaign will also focus on unsafe driving.