Local law enforcement out to help ensure safe holiday traveling

Staff report



LUMBERTON — Motorists traveling through Robeson County over the Thanksgiving holiday may encounter traffic safety checkpoints, as law enforcement agencies are cracking down on speeding and impaired driving.

The first checkpoint was in operation Tuesday, Sheriff Burnis Wilkins said. He did not release the location or names of all the participating agencies.

The Breath Alcohol Testing Mobile unit was present, along with multiple law enforcement agencies, to enforce traffic safety as motorists began their travels ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, he said.

“We expect that everyone will be careful in their travels and ask that the public be mindful of their speed, wear a seat belt and don’t drink and drive. Deputies have been instructed to take enforcement action as they see fit,” Wilkins said.

Members of the Lumberton Police Department participated in the Tuesday checkpoint and planned to help in other checkpoints, Chief Mike McNeill said.

“If they are traveling, we just want them to be safe,” McNeill said.

The police chief urged motorists to “be careful, be awake and aware of your surroundings.”

The St. Pauls Police Department did not participate in Tuesday’s checkpoint but will be present in others, Chief Steve Dollinger said. One of those checkpoints was to be in place Friday.

“All departments this weekend in Robeson are picking up the the pace to assure citizens of Robeson and the state are being protected from impaired drivers,” said Shane Todd, N.C. Forensic Tests for Alcohol: Breath Alcohol Testing coordinator.

“Forensic Tests For Alcohol will be working long hours to supply whatever essential tool is needed to aid in this mission by conducting checkpoints and saturations in areas throughout the state and Robeson County,” Todd added.

The efforts are an initiative by the N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program to make roadways safer during the Thanksgiving holiday.