The 4th of July travel weekend is underway for some and will be soon for others.  Sargent Jesse Grabow from the Minnesota State Patrol and MN-DOT Regional Coordinator Bill Van Koevering.  Getting to your destination safely is the top priority and Sargent Grabow indicates everyone can do this if they show patience, understand the laws and plan ahead for road construction.

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156 traffic related deaths have been reporting in the state so far in 2023 with the last reported death on June 25.  17 of those deaths were pedestrians, 25 were motorcyclists, 3 on snowmobiles, 1 on an ATV and the rest were automobiles.  174 traffic related deaths were reported in 2022.

Grabow encourages everyone to show awareness of pedestrians, motorcycles and other drivers.  He promotes the zipper merge when lanes are reduced, don't veer for deer and use common sense on the road.  Grabow indicates animal activity is high right now so be aware of those challenges but don't veer for deer or other animals because the accident you have could become more serious if drivers try and avoid animals and go into the ditch or into other traffic.

Bill Van Koevering highlights the following:

To celebrate safely:

•             Plan for a sober ride home ahead of time.

•             Use a ridesharing service or public transportation.

•             Drive defensively against drunk drivers.

•             Be aware of extra pedestrians and bicyclists.

•             Hosting a party? Provide non-alcoholic beverages for designated drivers.

•             Have a friend who is impaired and planning on driving? Take their keys away.

•             Obey the speed limit and always BUCKLE UP!

Spend the holiday with hotdogs and fireworks, and end the day safely at home. Together, we can drive Minnesota Toward Zero Deaths!

If you'd like to listen to my conversation with Sargent Jesse Grabow and Bill Van Koevering from Mn-Dot it is available below.

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