'100 Deadly Days of Summer' start Friday night

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – This weekend marks the beginning of the so-called "100 Deadly Days of Summer," and beginning Friday, troopers will saturate the roads in an effort to reduce fatalities during this heavily-traveled time for the state's highways.

The time between Memorial Day and Labor Day can be a time when fatalities start to rise due to an influx of vacation, out-of-state, and motorcycle travel, according to a news release from the South Carolina Department of Public Safety.

There have been 91 fewer fatalities this year than in 2012.

"Our goal right now is to achieve Target Zero traffic deaths by approaching traffic safety from every angle," said SCDPS Director Leroy Smith. "We have had a promising start to the year and we want to see that trend continue through the busy summer travel months, but that means we cannot get complacent."

Beginning at 6 p.m. Friday night, troopers will saturate the roads for the 102-hour travel holiday, law enforcement will conduct safety checkpoints, use radar to detect speeders, and concentrate on nighttime seatbelt enforcement.

Over the same period last year, there were eight fatalities as a result of eight fatal crashes involving three motor vehicles, four motorcycles and one pedestrian.

"Troopers will be placing a special emphasis on DUI, safety belt and speed enforcement during Memorial Day," said Col. Mike Oliver. "Again, so much of our success depends on motorists and passengers taking personal responsibility for their behavior in the vehicle."

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