The Missouri Highway Patrol is placing state troopers at 20-mile intervals on Labor Day along interstates 29, 44, 55 and 70.

Patrol Captain John Hotz says the Patrol is participating in Operation C.A.R.E., which stands for Crash Awareness and Reduction Effort.

“We want to see fewer traffic crashes than we saw last year,” Hotz says. “Last year was a particularly deadly year so we’re just encouraging people with our presence to do the right thing.”

During the 2016 Labor Day holiday, 20 people were killed and another 429 were injured in Missouri traffic crashes. That means one person was killed or injured every ten minutes in Missouri during the 2016 Labor Day holiday.

Captain Hotz tells Missourinet all available troopers are on the road Monday, targeting aggressive driving violations and assisting motorists.

“We know the more police officers that we see out there, the more troopers we see out there, typically people drive a little bit safer when they see a patrol car and so our hope is just through presence that we’ll see a reduction in the number of traffic violations out there,” says Hotz.

A Missouri state trooper on the Lake of the Ozarks in August 2017 (photo courtesy of the Highway Patrol}

He says speed, inattention and impaired driving are the leading causes of traffic crashes.

This year’s counting period for the Labor Day holiday ends at 11:59 p.m. Monday.

The Labor Day holiday is also a busy boating weekend. Hotz says all available officers are working this weekend on the waterways as well.

Hotz says that in 2016, there were ten boating crashes. While there were no fatalities, ten people were injured.


Click here to listen to the full interview between Missourinet’s Brian Hauswirth and Missouri Highway Patrol Captain John Hotz, which was recorded on September 1, 2017: