St. Lawrence County drivers urged to use traffic apps and texting stops to make for safer holiday trips
Wednesday, December 27, 2017 - 6:02 am

Drivers in St. Lawrence County and around the state are urged to take advantage of traffic apps and texting stops on state roads to make the holiday period a safer one.

State road construction projects that did not have to keep going over the Christmas weekend were closed to ease traffic, and will close again from 6 a.m. this Friday, Dec. 29 through Tuesday, Jan. 2.

They were to be suspended during peak holiday travel times to provide easier travel for residents and visitors.

All work behind temporary lane closures associated with road and bridge construction projects will cease under the order. Some construction work behind permanent barriers or for emergency repairs may be done.

State officials also used the occasion as a reminder that there are 64 text stops across the state, and New York's "Move Over" law requires drivers to use due care, slow down and safely move over when they see flashing lights on the side of the road. This protects emergency responders, tow truck operators, police and firefighters as they work to help motorists along New York's roadways, a press statement from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office said.

Travelers planning to go out celebrating are also encouraged to use the Have a Plan app to help them determine how they will get safely home. The app can be used to designate a driver, call for a taxi or ride share, or to learn information about the consequences of impaired driving. It can also be used to report a drunk or drugged driver.

The Have a Plan app is free and available for Apple, Android, and Windows smart phones.

New York State Police have previously announced they will participate in the national "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" campaign through Saturday, Dec. 30. Troopers will also be conducting their own enforcement period over New Year's Eve, from Sunday, Dec. 31 through Monday, Jan. 1.

To check road conditions to a destination, travelers are encouraged to check 511NY by calling 511 or by accessing www.511ny.org before departing. The free service also allows users to link to air and transit information.

Mobile users can download the free 511NY mobile app from the iTunes or Google Play stores. The app also features Drive mode, which provides audible alerts along a chosen route while a user is driving, warning them about incidents and construction. Users can set a destination prior to departing and receive information about up to three routes.