SAN DIEGO, Calif. — The California Highway Patrol will deploy all available officers through the Thanksgiving holiday weekend to ensure motorist arrive at their destinations safely, announced the law enforcement agency in a press release.

Officials anticipate millions of people will venture out and CHP said it’s preparing for one of the busiest travel weekends in the nation.

A Maximum Enforcement Period, or MEP, will begin at 6:01 p.m. on Nov. 23 and is set to end at 11:59 p.m. on Nov. 27, CHP said. During this period, officers will be actively looking for unsafe driving behaviors, including impaired or distracted driving, unsafe speed and people not wearing seat belts.

“As with every holiday, the CHP will work to keep motorists safe as they travel to gatherings with friends and family,” said Commissioner Amanda Ray.  “Our officers will be on patrol to take enforcement action as necessary and to provide assistance to motorists who are stranded or in need of help on the side of the road.”

During the 2021 Thanksgiving holiday weekend, CHP’s MEP data showed 42 people, including 16 pedestrians and one bicyclist, were killed in crashes in CHP’s jurisdiction. Additionally, officers issued more than 5,600 citations for speed and seat belt violations while also arresting 1,033 people for driving under the influence during the four-day period. 

“Enjoy your Thanksgiving festivities, but please celebrate responsibly, wear your seat belt, and always designate a sober, nondrinking driver,” said Ray.

CHP said their mission is to provide the highest level of safety, service and security.