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Police to beef up Memorial Day patrols on local and state roadways

Local and state law enforcement officers will be out in force this weekend to help make sure everyone has a safe Memorial Day holiday.

The Mississippi Highway Patrol will kick off the 2018 Memorial Day Travel Enforcement Period with its annual safety awareness initiative “Drive to Survive.”

The enforcement period and initiative will begin Friday at 6 p.m. and conclude Monday at midnight. With distracted driving issues becoming more prevalent on Mississippi roadways, MHP urges drivers to have a “Drive to Survive” mindset and make safe driving top priority.

All available troopers will be assigned saturation patrols in an effort to maximize visibility and reduce traffic crashes. Safety checkpoints will also be established to prevent impaired driving and promote seat belt usage. In 2017, MHP investigated 122 crashes with 2 fatalities and made 110 DUI arrests on state and federal highway systems throughout the period.

The Oxford Police Department will have extra traffic patrols over the weekend as well.

“Our extra patrols correlates with the grants that we get through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration,” said OPD Maj. Jeff McCutchen.

McCutchen said OPD the holiday weekend also falls within its “Click it or Ticket” campaign that runs through June 3 where officers concentrate on making sure drivers and passengers are keeping safe by wearing seat belts.