The Memorial Day weekend travel period officially began at 6 p.m. Friday.
Highway Patrol Lieutenant Kelly Hughes says eight people died in South Carolina traffic mishaps during each of the previous 102-hour-long Memorial Day weekends in 2012 and 2011.
“We have planned special enforcement throughout the state to try and keep that from happening this year,” Hughes told WVOC.
“We're encouraging motorists to wear their seat belt, follow and obey the speed law and refrain from drinking and driving. Also, we'd like for them to report any impaired drivers to our *47, or *HP, by cellular phone.”
This weekend kicks off what law enforcement refers to as the “100 Deadly Days of Summer,” the period from Memorial Day to Labor Day where traffic fatalities usually increase because of more people on the road for summer travel.
Last year during the period there were 217 deaths, the lowest number in three years.
And so far overall this year, highway fatalities in our state are running about 90 fewer than at the same time last year.
Officials say safe driving practices can help keep those numbers down.