Officers work to keep drivers safe through holiday weekend
Posted at: 05/25/2012 10:10 PM
| Updated at: 05/25/2012 11:42 PM
By: Amanda Ciavarri | WHEC.com
t's a holiday weekend, which means a very busy weekend for drivers- and for law enforcement. They are keeping a close eye on the roads, working to keep them safe for all of us when we travel.
AAA says more than 30 million people will drive at least 50 miles this weekend.
News10NBC went on a ride-along with a New York State Trooper Friday.
It started with a traffic stop. Trooper Eric Salamone noticed a vehicle on 490 with what appeared to be an expired registration and a broken side mirror. Salamone is just one of dozens of law enforcement officers patrolling the roads this busy holiday weekend.
"In Monroe County alone, there are going to be 2.2 million drivers approximately, driving 50 miles or more away from their homes. It comes with a lot more vehicles on the roadway, comes with a lot more human error, distracted drivers putting makeup on, talking on a cell phone, looking at directions," says Trooper Salamone.
Back at the traffic stop, Trooper Salamone notices the driver is nervous.
There are needle caps on the floor and when he goes to talk to the driver outside the car, the passengers appear to start hiding things.
Salamone takes no chance and calls for back up. Both city and state police come to help out.
Salamone finds drugs on one of the passengers, and even more after a sweep of the car- crack, marijuana, a pipe, needles and an open beer.
"You mix those combinations up and try to operate a motor vehicle, it's a deadly combination. You're never gonna get to your destination safe," Trooper Salamone tells News10NBC.
Two of the passengers in the car that Trooper Salamone stopped were arrested for possession and a number of other charges. The driver was also ticketed.
Salamone says if he can keep the roads safe from cars like these, he's done his job. "We are looking for everything this weekend. A lot of people are going to go camping are gonna go partying, stuff like that. Some people think in order to have a fun they need to mix this stuff up. It's not gonna happen today though," he says.
It's not just the big stuff like this stop that police are looking for. On the ride-along, Trooper Salamone did pull over cars for things like broken tail lights and not following the move over law. A lot of them were cars from out of state.
It serves as a friendly reminder- if you're going out of town this weekend, double check your car and make sure you know the laws in the state you are traveling to or through.