Whether you are headed on vacation or plan to stay around home for the Fourth of July, the Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT) urges motorists to drive alert and use caution while on their way to celebrations throughout the weekend. 

“The July Fourth weekend is anticipated to be one of the heaviest travel times this year particularly following a year when Georgians weren’t able to travel due to COVID-19,” said State Traffic Engineer Andrew Heath. “We recommend drivers pay extra attention, stay off their phones and buckle up. We want you to stay safe and enjoy your weekend activities.”  

With roadway fatalities on the rise in Georgia in 2021, Georgia DOT offers the following tips to keep drivers safe this weekend.

  • Stay Alert and Minimize Distractions. Pay full attention to the roadway and avoid changing radio stations or using cell phones and other electronic devices while driving. Remember, Georgia is a hands-free state for mobile devices while driving.
  • Remain in your vehicle. In the event of a crash or breakdown, GDOT advises motorists to never get out of the car on a freeway, unless your life is in imminent danger. If possible, pull off the road, turn on your hazard lights and stay seat-belted in the vehicle with the doors locked.
  • Expect the Unexpected. Traffic conditions may change quickly.
  • Slow Down. Don’t Tailgate. Speed is a factor in many crashes. Keep a safe distance between you and the car ahead of you.
  • Wear Your Seatbelt. It is your best defense in a crash. And make sure your passengers are buckled up, even in the back seat of the vehicle.

Safety is always a primary concern. Georgia DOT is committed to reducing fatalities on Georgia’s Roadways, but the department cannot do it alone. Through its Drive Alert Arrive Alive (DAAA) campaign, GDOT has called attention to an alarming surge in fatalities on Georgia’s roads. Many of these deaths are preventable, and in 2019 70 percent of fatalities were attributed to driver behavior. DAAA implores motorists to focus on driving, to not drive distracted and to wear a seatbelt to reduce the chance of serious injury or death if there is a crash. Visit www.dot.ga.gov/DAAA to learn more.  

As a reminder, to ease traffic congestion Georgia DOT is suspending construction-related lane closures on interstate and secondary routes from Friday, July 2 through Tuesday July 7. Motorists are encouraged to plan ahead and call 511 or visit 511ga.org where you can access statewide, route-specific information on crashes, road work, traffic and weather. Callers can transfer to operators to report incidents or request assistance on interstate or state routes throughout Georgia.