Traveling? Watch for other drivers, the law, and expensive gas - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Traveling? Watch for other drivers, the law, and expensive gas

June 30, 2006

Albany -- The fourth of July holiday period is one of the busiest travel weekends of the year, and the Georgia State Patrol predicts it will be a deadly one.   

The official holiday travel period runs from 6:00 Friday until midnight Tuesday. During the 102-hour holiday period, 23 deaths are predicted across Georgia in more than 2,700 traffic crashes. It's also Estimated more than 1,300 people will be hurt in those wrecks.   

Last year 12 of the 24 people killed during the holiday weren't wearing their seatbelts.  Ten of the victims were in wrecks that involved an alcohol or drug impaired driver. 

South Georgia law enforcers hope they can prevent any fatalities from happening here. Dougherty County Police are concentrating patrols to discourage speeding and alcohol use by drivers. In the past three months, DCP officers have stepped up traffic patrols and have seen fewer accidents, resulting in fewer injuries and no fatalities.

They say if people know officers are looking out for dangerous drivers they'll be more careful on the road and avoid deadly situations. "That's a terrible fact, of three people to be dead," Lt. Tom Jackson of the Dougherty Co. Police Department. "That's what we're trying to eliminate, we're trying to stop that from happening throughout the United States itself, someone is killed by a drunk driver in this country.  We're going to make sure it ceases to exist around here, because were going to be in force."  

DCP Officers will also be using a new high-tech gadget to help catch drunk drivers.  It's a flashlight with an alcohol sensor built in.  If alcohol is detected, they will then conduct additional tests to determine if the driver is capable of driving safely.  

If you plan to hit the road for the holiday, you better be prepared for higher gas prices.    Since Thursday the price of gas at many Albany stations jumped about 10 cents. Prices are now around $2.85 a gallon.  The national average is $2.89, sixty seven cents more than this time a year ago.  

"I'm very surprised it just keeps going up and up and up," says Customer Kelvin Slaughter.  "It's hard for the consumers.  Eventually it's going to be hard for the community to pay for gas.  Everyone's going to work for gas it seems like."

"It's about $65 to fill up my tank," said Customer Adam Morris .   

The average price for regular unleaded in Georgia is $2.82 per gallon. Report gas prices you see, or check them out on the WALB PumpPatrol!

Feedback: news@walb.com?subject=Traveling?-KC