Extra state troopers on patrol through 4th of July weekend

By Emily Gillespie, Columbian breaking news reporter

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Extra troopers are out in full force through the Fourth of July weekend, patrolling for dangerous drivers on interstates and state routes.

Washington State Patrol began its increased patrols on June 21, with troopers focusing on speeding, aggressive driving, impaired drivers and seat belt and child restraint violations.

The increased patrol, which will last through July 7, is an effort to make the Fourth of July holiday one that is both enjoyable and safe.

Last year, Washington troopers across the state arrested 484 impaired drivers, issued 8,565 speeding infractions and gave out 1,303 violations for seat belt and child restraint between July 1 and July 8.

State patrol reminds motorists to include safety when planning for trips, which includes bringing extra supplies in your vehicle such as batteries, food and water and a first aid kit. They also advise motorists to make sure your vehicle is maintained and allow extra time to make it to your destination, accounting for heavy traffic.