State, local agencies emphasize safe driving, planning ahead
May 27, 2016
PHOENIX – During the Memorial Day weekend, state and local agencies are focusing on keeping motorists safe and placing equipment and resources along heavily traveled highways to help move traffic should incidents occur.
The Arizona Department of Transportation and its contractors won’t schedule construction closures along state highways from Friday through late Monday evening. Drivers are urged to use caution over the holiday weekend in existing work zones and in three “holiday travel corridors” that will receive extra enforcement and resources to minimize travel delays.
As they have during recent major holiday weekends, ADOT and the Arizona Department of Public Safety are emphasizing safety in three high-traffic zones: Interstate 17 between north Phoenix and Flagstaff, Interstate 10 between Phoenix and Tucson and State Route 87 between Mesa and Payson. Along those routes, ADOT crews will strategically stage equipment, such as loaders and utility trucks, minimizing travel delays with faster response times to crashes and stalled vehicles. Overhead signs will update travelers on traffic conditions and safety reminders.
DPS will focus on preventing three leading causes of traffic deaths: speeding, impaired driving and lack of seat-belt use. The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety is working with local, county and state law enforcement agencies on a holiday DUI enforcement campaign. Last year in Arizona, 12 people died in 11 fatal traffic collisions during the holiday weekend. Six of the crashes were alcohol-related.
No closures are scheduled during the holiday weekend, but travelers should be aware that existing work-zone restrictions with lane reductions will remain in place. This includes I-10 in Benson and eastbound I-40 about 30 miles east of Kingman.
Because unexpected delays can occur due to crashes and stalled vehicles, drivers are encouraged to:
Pack extra drinking water and snacks
Avoid the busiest travel times, if possible
Get plenty of rest before driving
Check vehicles, including tire pressure, belts and fluid levels
If a trip to Sedona is in your holiday weekend plans, town officials urge motorists traveling north on I-17 to consider taking State Route 260 and State Route 89A and avoid heavy traffic on State Route 179.