Families around the nation will be traveling this weekend to spend time with loved ones for the Independence Day holiday. Louisiana State Troopers are reminding us that we have to be extra careful as the highways fill up with motorists.

In 2015, six families were met with tragic news on this joyous holiday when troopers had to notify them of the death of a loved one in a preventable accident. Hundreds of other motorists spent the holiday behind bars.

In a press release from the Louisiana State Police, it states that July 4th is traditionally a deadly weekend for travel, but nearly all of that is preventable if we all use a little common sense.

The fact remains that Independence Day is one of the deadliest holidays of the year due to impaired driving. To ensure a safe and enjoyable time for all, an increased number of Troopers will be on patrol during the Fourth of July weekend celebration. Louisiana State Police and law enforcement across the state will be working together to remove impaired drivers from roadways, and will also be making sure that occupants of all ages are properly restrained in their vehicles.

This year, an anticipated 41 million Americans are expected to travel 50 miles or more over the Fourth of July weekend. The increase in traffic volume combined with an increase in alcohol use tends to lead to more crashes. Troopers remind motorists to:

  • Always ensure everyone is properly restrained (all seating positions, day and night)
  • Never drive impaired or ride with an impaired driver
  • Avoid distractions while driving
  • Be courteous and patient while dealing with higher than normal traffic volumes

Remembering and using these simple tips while traveling will greatly increase your chances of arriving at your destination safely. LSP will be targeting driving behaviors such as impaired driving, speeding, unrestrained occupants, aggressive driving, and distracted driving. Troopers will ticket drivers who choose not to follow these rules.

It's also wise to know all you can about travel conditions, road work, and weather before you start your journey.

Travel information, including road closures due to crashes or construction, may be obtained a variety of ways including:

  • Dialing 511 from any phone in Louisiana
  • Visiting www.511la.org
  • Utilizing the free “Way to Geaux” app on your smartphone
  • Following the Louisiana State Police Facebook and Twitter pages (www.facebook.com/LouisianaStatePolice) (https://twitter.com/LAStatePolice)

You can get the full weather forecast for Shreveport at NOAA's SITE.

Troopers throughout Louisiana also urge every citizen and visitor to report any hazardous situation or impaired driver to the nearest Troop by dialing *577 (*LSP) from a cellular phone, or 911 to your local law enforcement agency.