Don’t drive tired, be sure to buckle up! 8 Thanksgiving travel safety tips 

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AUSTIN, Texas — It’s almost time for delicious cranberry sauce and turkey! Before you hit the road to grandma’s house, the Texas Department of Public Safety has a few tips to ensure your Thanksgiving is memorable, safe and responsible.

“The Thanksgiving weekend invariably means increased traffic on roadways, and DPS is reminding Texans that we all have a responsibility to help make the roads safe for everyone,” DPS Director Steven McCraw said. “Our Troopers will be on the lookout for dangerous drivers who disregard the law – at the same time, we urge drivers to use extra caution while traveling and to always drive sober.”

DPS troopers will be patrolling Texas around-the-clock during the holiday weekend looking for drunk drivers, speeders, seat belt violators and other drivers who are endangering themselves and others, McCraw said.

The department reports DPS troopers issued 28,835 traffic citations and warnings for a variety of violations, including speeding, no insurance, seat belt and child safety seat usage during Thanksgiving weekend last year. Officials said DPS patrols also resulted in 219 driving while intoxicated arrests, 127 fugitive arrests and 94 felony arrests during the same time period.

DPS offers the following tips for safe travel during the Thanksgiving holiday:

  • Don’t drink and drive. Designate a driver or take a cab.
  • Slow down – especially in bad weather, construction areas and heavy traffic.
  • Eliminate distractions, including the use of mobile devices.
  • Buckle up everyone in the vehicle – it’s the law.
  • Slow down or move over for police, fire, EMS and Texas Department of Transportation vehicles and tow trucks that are stopped on the side of the road with emergency lights activated – it’s the law. Also, show the same courtesy to fellow drivers stopped along the road if it is safe to do so.
  • Don’t drive fatigued – get plenty of rest before trips or take breaks as needed.
  • Drive defensively, as holiday travel may present additional challenges.
  • Make sure your vehicle is properly maintained before your trip begins.