Md., Va. troopers amp up traffic enforcement for Memorial Day weekend

Beachgoers traveling through Virginia and Maryland this weekend better buckle up, keep their hands on the wheel and an eye on the speedometer. Both Maryland and Virginia State Police announced Friday that they will be ramping up traffic enforcement for the Memorial Day holiday. That means a lot more police will be watching the roads.

Maryland State Police say their troopers conducted 7,496 traffic stops, made 121 DUI arrests, 40 criminal arrests and 66 warrant arrests last year.

They say they also issued 1,840 speeding citations, 188 seat belt citations, 3,009 additional citations and 4,420 warnings over the 2018 Memorial Day weekend.

Troopers also responded to 371 crashes, including two that were fatal.

Virginia State Police will also be increasing patrols over the long holiday weekend.

During the 2018 Memorial Day weekend, troopers arrested 122 drunk drivers, cited 8,673 speeders and 2,704 reckless drivers. Troopers issued 218 citations for child safety seat violations and cited 856 individuals for failing to wear a seat belt.

There were 11 traffic fatalities over the weekend in 2018, up from eight fatal crashes in 2017 and 2016.

A record-setting 3.2 million people from D.C., Virginia and Maryland will be traveling this weekend, according to AAA Mid-Atlantic.

Travel volume in the region will be up more than 3% from last Memorial Day, notes INRIX, a travel analytics firm.

“We hope Virginians make traffic safety a priority every day of the year, but are encouraging motorists to be extra attentive during the holiday weekend,” said Col. Gary T. Settle, VSP superintendent. “More than a million drivers on Virginia’s highways over the Memorial Day weekend means we have more than a million reasons to safely share the road, buckle up, drive distraction free, comply with speed limits and to not drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs.” contributed to this report.

Will Vitka

William Vitka is a Digital Writer/Editor for He's been in the news industry for over a decade. Before joining WTOP, he worked for CBS News, Stuff Magazine, The New York Post and wrote a variety of books—about a dozen of them, with more to come.

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