With the Memorial Day holiday traffic surge well underway on the interstates of Northern Virginia, the Virginia State Police are stepping up their presence for the duration of the long weekend. As part of Operation C.A.R.E. (Combined Accident Reduction Effort), which is conducted annually nationwide on all major travel holiday weekends, the Virginia State Police currently has 75 percent of its uniformed workforce out on patrol. The increased visibility began at 12:01 a.m. Friday (May 23, 2014) and continues through midnight Monday (May 26, 2014) in conjunction with the operation.
In addition, Virginia State Police will be participating in Operation Millipede, the Maryland State Police traffic initiative targeting Interstate 95. On the Virginia side of I-95 throughout the holiday weekend, Virginia troopers will be conducting strict enforcement of speed limits and targeting seat belt and child safety seat violations, impaired drivers, and aggressive driving behaviors.
“During the 2013 Memorial Day weekend, two of Virginia’s nine fatal crashes occurred in Northern Virginia,” said Capt. Mike Spivey, Virginia State Police Fairfax Division Commander. “We are encouraging all motorists to prevent traffic crashes by buckling up, not driving distracted or impaired, and not tailgating. Simply drive to save lives.”
With the increased presence of troopers on the Maryland and Virginia sides of Interstate 95, Interstate 495, and all other Northern Virginia interstate and highway corridors, motorists are reminded of both states’ “Move Over” laws. Virginia’s “Move Over” law requires drivers to change to another travel lane away from emergency personnel or, when not able to, cautiously pass first responders stopped on the side of the road. The law also applies to highway maintenance vehicles and tow trucks equipped with flashing amber lights.
Virginia State Police and the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) just launched a new “Move Over Awareness Video” on Tuesday (May 20, 2014), which can be viewed on the Virginia State Police YouTube site at https://www.youtube.com/user/vspvideos. The video is available in both English and Spanish.
Follow #MoveOver on Twitter for the latest on Move Over safety efforts around the nation.