Heavy traffic has become synonymous with Thanksgiving and Black Friday, but local and state agencies say they are preparing to make the drive over the river and through the woods smoother this holiday weekend.
The Ohio Department of Transportation's preparations for the holiday vary based on the construction they are completing, according to Public Information Officer Brent Kovacs.
"When there's a holiday, permanent work zones remain in effect," Kovacs said. "But temporary work zones will be taken down."
A permanent work zone includes large projects such as bridge constructions that require extensive work. Temporary work zones might include resurfacing roads at night, according to Kovacs.
Even with less construction, Sgt. Jason Bonar of the Ohio State Highway Patrol Warren Post in Southington said that in years past the patrol has an "increased presence on the days before and after Thanksgiving," and that it is typical for overtime hours to be put in by officers.
With shopping and family feasts on drivers' minds, Bonar requests that they "focus on the task at hand, not on cell phones, laptops and iPads."
Child safety belt laws
Children less than 4 years old or 40 pounds must use a child safety seat.
Children less than 8 years old, unless they are at least 4 feet 9 inches tall, must use a booster seat.
Children ages 8 to 15 must use a child safety seat or safety belt.
Source: Ohio Revised Code
Braceville police Chief Bill Garro said, "This time of year, we are looking for impaired and reckless driving."
In particular, he said his department checks for improper seat restraints and "has zero tolerance for that, especially with children."
Earlier in the week Chief Garro posted the guidelines for children's car seats and booster seats on his department's Facebook page.
"I'm not offering parenting advice," said Garro, "but they should know how to properly transport their children."
Before leaving this weekend, drivers can check www.buckeyetraffic.org for updates on road construction, traffic delays and closures across Ohio.