KANSAS (KSNT) – The Kansas Highway Patrol is warning motorists to practice caution while traveling this weekend.

Both the Kansas Turnpike Authority and the Kansas Department of Transportation have joined the KHP in encouraging motorists to travel safely on the Independence Day weekend and throughout the rest of the summer season.

“Remember to celebrate safely this upcoming holiday weekend,” said Colonel Herman T. Jones, Superintendent of the KHP. “Please make sure you and your loved ones are always buckled up when you get into a vehicle, and don’t drive impaired or distracted. If you plan on drinking over the weekend, make a plan to get home safely by designating your sober driver before you celebrate.”

The KHP will be working together with the Combined Accident Reduction Effort enforcement and other personnel from other states from July 1-4. C.A.R.E focuses on occupant protection, impaired driving laws and other crash-causing traffic violations with the goal of increasing safety and ease of travel on our nation’s roads.

In 2021, a total of 399 crashes occurred during the Independence Day holiday period which resulted in 110 injuries and six fatalities.

“Every time I read an article about someone losing their life in a traffic crash, I think of the incredible loss for them, their family, and friends,” said Kansas Transportation Secretary Julie Lorenz. “Many crashes can be prevented by making safety your top priority – wear a seat belt, eliminate distractions, don’t drive impaired, and follow posted traffic regulations. Every time you travel, make it a goal to make it to your destination safely.”

You can check the route you plan to use while traveling for potential delays or road work with the help of KanDrive. This website includes camera images, interactive maps and links to rest areas, travel and tourism sites.

Some other tips you can follow include:

  • Make sure that your vehicle is in proper working order for the heat of summer by checking fluids, tires, air conditioning and cooling systems.
  • Start your journey with a full tank of gas and a fully charged phone.
  • Plan your route of travel and check KanDrive for construction and other issues with your travel plans. Also, be sure to give a family member your travel plans.
  • As you travel, remember to move over for first responders and highway maintenance crews. If you are unable to move over, then slow down.
  • In case of a break down, keep emergency supplies in your car, including bottles of water, a phone charger and non-perishable food items.
  • Ensure everyone in your vehicle is using their seat belt and/or appropriately fitted child safety seat.
  • Arrange for a designated driver ahead of time if you will be consuming alcohol. Do not drink and drive.
  • If you are hosting a party, have non-alcoholic drink alternatives available for designated drivers.