The Lake Oswego Police Department, along with other law departments throughout Oregon, will be conducting traffic safety operations through June 2. There will be high visibility details over the Memorial Day holiday weekend.

This campaign will focus on the proper use of seat belts for drivers during daytime and nighttime hours. Law enforcement officers will also look for distracted drivers who are using their mobile communication devices while operating their vehicles, as well as drivers who are violating the speed limit.

“We enforce seatbelts in Lake Oswego simply because they save lives and reduce injuries,” said LOPD Lt. Doug Treat. “Distracted driving is a problem in Lake Oswego driven mainly by cellphone usage. We need drivers to focus on driving, not have their attention divided between cellphones and operating a 5,000-pound vehicle.”

This is considered to be an optimum time of the year for such a project because increases in traffic are expected. The Memorial Day weekend also coincides with many year-end school activities like prom and graduation. Drivers are urged to be vigilant and make preparations to keep themselves and their loved ones safe during these busy times.

Key factors in the huge number of accidents, including fatalities, include text messaging, speeding and alcohol impairment.

Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicate the huge problem resulting from a lack of driver preparation for the Memorial Day weekend. In 2011, 3,331 people were killed in crashes, and an additional 387,000 people were injured in crashes involving a distracted driver. In 2011, 9,878 people were killed in alcohol-impaired crashes in the United States.

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