Safety stressed for Independence Day holiday and summer travel

In the midst of the summer travel season, the Kansas Turnpike Authority and Kansas Highway Patrol are partnering to remind motorists to travel safely during Independence Day, and throughout the rest of the summer.

Over the 2017 Independence Day Holiday weekend, statewide there were seven fatal crashes, which killed seven people. Additionally, 159 people were injured in the 547 total crashes from Friday, June 30 through Tuesday, July 4, 2017. None of the fatal crashes were alcohol-related.

“We can’t stress enough how important it is to be prepared for any summer travel,” said Steve Hewitt, KTA CEO. “We hope you don’t need that emergency kit in your vehicle, but you’ll be glad that you have it if you do.”

From July 3 through July 4, KHP personnel will be working in support of the Combined Accident Reduction Effort (CARE) enforcement, along with personnel from other states. CARE focuses on occupant protection, impaired driving laws, and other crash-causing traffic violations. CARE’s goal is increased safety and ease of travel on our nation’s roadways.

The agencies wish all of those traveling during the upcoming holiday, safe travels. Anyone in need of help on a Kansas highway can call KHP for assistance at *47 (*HP) or *KTA (*582) for the Kansas Turnpike.

As you enjoy your summer travels and celebrate Independence Day, the agencies offer some tips:

  • Ensure your vehicle is in proper working order for the heat of summer – check fluids, tires, the air conditioning and cooling system.
  • If you’re leaving for travel, begin with a full tank of gas, and a fully charged phone.
  • Plan your route of travel and check www.kandrive.org for construction, and other issues with your travel plans. The site also has links to other states’ info. Give a family member your travel plans.
  • As you travel, remember to move over for first responders and highway maintenance crews. If you are unable to move over, then slow down.
  • Keep emergency supplies in your car, including bottles of water, a phone charger, and non-perishable food items.
  • Ensure everyone in your vehicle is using their seat belt or an appropriately-fitted child safety seat.
  • If you’ll be consuming alcohol, ensure you have a designated driver arranged ahead of time.
  • If you’re hosting a party, ensure you have non-alcoholic drink alternatives available.

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