With all of the picnics, parades and fireworks going on this Fourth of July holiday, South Dakota Department of Public Safety officials remind people to also make safe driving a priority.

State Highway Patrol Col. Rick Miller says troopers will be patrolling the highways and interstates this weekend because of the expected heavier holiday traffic. He says being a safe driver is everyone’s responsibility.

Miller says the Patrol is taking part in a Crash Awareness and Reduction Effort (CARE) effort, designed to encourage motorists to be safe drivers.

Last year (2021), the Office of Highway Safety reported 134 motor vehicle traffic crashes with two fatalities and 36 injuries during the Fourth of July holiday reporting period. Both fatalities were motor vehicle occupants who were not wearing seat belts. So far this year, the number of South Dakota fatalities is 37 percent lower than the same time last year.

Both the Office of Highway Safety and Highway Patrol are agencies of the Department of Public Safety.

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