More Travel Expected Over Labor Day Weekend
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A greater number of Mississippians are expected to hit the road this holiday weekend than in recent years. Travel experts say Labor Day Weekend is among the most dangerous holidays for drivers.

Roughly 35.5 million Americans, including several thousand Mississippians, will travel over the final holiday weekend of summer.

Don Redman is with the travel firm AAA. He says economic gains are giving more people the chance to vacation. 

"You do see some consumer confidence, people are confident in the jobs that they have, but don't make any mistake about it that the fact that we've seen some gas prices for this time of year we haven't seen in 11 years," says Redman. "That has a role in helping families decide to travel because it's giving them more disposable income."

As with many summer holidays, Redman says a majority of Americans will head outdoors to beaches, lakes, rivers or state parks for the weekend, and nearly 90 percent of them will go by car.  

Last year in Mississippi, the state Highway Patrol investigated 113 crashes and two fatalities. It's the reason law enforcement officials across the state will begin stepping up patrols starting tonight.

Captain Johnny Poulos is with Mississippi Highway Patrol. 

"We're going to patrol all of the interstate systems and state highways systems in the state," Poulos says. "we do anticipate heavy traffic on the interstate systems, and that's where you're going to see the majority of state troopers in combination with local law enforcement agencies across the state. We're going to have pretty good coverage."

Law enforcement officials say they will also be on the lookout for distracted drivers who are texting or using social media while behind the wheel.