OAKLAND, Calif. (KTVU) - Officer Carlos Rios of the California Highway Patrol’s Oakland office will be busy this holiday weekend.
"We'll be focusing on speeding violations. We'll be focusing on cell phones. Seat belts. We'll also be focusing on unsafe lane changes,” Rios said during a ride-along with KTVU.
From Friday evening until New Year's Day, all available officers will be cracking down on violators to keep the public safe.
"The reason we have this maximum enforcement period is, we are trying to make everyone gets from Point A to Point B safe and sound,” Rios said.
Not too far from the officer's mind: the Christmas Eve death of fellow CHP Officer Andrew Camilleri, who was hit and killed by a driver in Hayward who was allegedly drunk and high on marijuana.
On our ride-along, it didn't take long for Officer Rios to whip out his ticket book. He stopped a woman for blowing a stop sign in Richmond.
The officer also pulled over a man who felt it was OK to drive on the right shoulder on Interstate 80 because he had an appointment to make.
“A lot of people i notice during the holidays tend to drive over recklessly, especially like locals,” Rios said. “They're impatient because the flow of traffic isn't going their way."
We also came across a traffic collision in which a man, while driving his girlfriend's car, rear-ended a much bigger SUV.
The CHP says, the bottom line is that if you drive safely, you'll get where you want to go.
If you do decide to drink, there are a number of other ways to get around without getting behind the wheel.
You can order a ride share like Uber or Lyft through a mobile app service or even get a taxi the same way. Many cab companies are available through mobile apps like Flywheel and YoTaxi and unlike the startups, their drivers are regulated.
Consider public transit, like BART. They will provide special service to and from San Francisco starting at 8 p.m. and extending to 3 a.m. See their full holiday schedule here, but please note fares do go up January 1.
You could also get a designated driver.
AAA is again providing its "tipsy tow" service, giving people a free, 10-mile lift back home
During New Year’s weekend last year, 29 people died on California roadways, and the CHP made more than 750 DUI arrests. Officers hope you won't become part of those statistics.