Many Kansans are planning to hit the road and celebrate the Fourth of July with family and friends. The Kansas Department of Transportation and the Kansas Highway Patrol encourage travelers to plan ahead and make their trips and celebrations as safe as possible.
Nationally, AAA is projecting that 44.2 million Americans will travel during Independence Day weekend, with 3.34 million of those in this region. This year is projected to be the most-traveled Independence Day holiday ever. Cheaper gas prices are likely a contributing factor to the high number of holiday travelers, with airfares and car rental rates also lower than our last Independence Day.
“AAA would like to remind drivers to be sure their vehicle and the passengers are road trip ready,” said Jennifer Haugh, AAA Kansas spokesperson. “Eliminating distractions and impairment, plus buckling up, will help motorists avoid tragedy.”
KDOT and KHP remind travelers not to drink and drive. Law enforcement agencies from across the state will be actively watching for impaired drivers.
“As travelers take to the highways throughout the holiday weekend there are steps they can take to make it to their destination safely,” Kansas Highway Patrol Lt. Adam Winters said. “Any time you ride in a vehicle, buckle up and make sure children are in the appropriate child safety seats. For those planning to drink over the weekend, designate your sober driver before you celebrate. We want people to enjoy the festivities, but we also want them to be safe.”
Before travelers pack their cars, they can check their route for delays or construction with the help of KanDrive at www.kandrive.org, which can also be accessed from mobile devices. KanDrive includes camera images and interactive maps, as well as links to rest areas and travel and tourism sites.
Much of the same information can be accessed by calling 5-1-1 in Kansas or 1-866-511-KDOT (5368) in the U.S.
If you are involved in a crash or need assistance on a Kansas highway, call *47 (*HP) from a cell phone for a highway patrol dispatcher, or if on the Kansas Turnpike, dial *582 (*KTA).