Highway Patrol

Photo: An Interstate in North Carolina
Jimmy Emmerson / Flickr

Rep. Harry Warren likes to wear flag pins on his jacket: One with the U.S. flag, and another with the North Carolina flag. On Tuesday morning, he sported them as he stood in front of the House of Representatives’ powerful finance committee, arguing the federal government has been ignoring a problem, and that the state government should take action.

“The question before us is whether or not we as an elected body want to take some strong legislative steps to hold undocumented folks accountable to obey North Carolina law,” Warren said.

A picture of a motor boat pulling a water skiier.
Fir0002 / Wikipedia

Law enforcement officials want North Carolinians to think twice before drinking and getting behind the wheel of a car or boat.

The State Highway Patrol and Wildlife Resources Commission are teaming up in a campaign called "On the road, on the water... Don't Drink and Drive."

Highway Patrol spokesman Sergeant Mike Baker says officers will be out around the summer's major holiday weekends.

A picture of a yellow NCDOT truck.
ncdot.org

Yellow Department of Transportation trucks have been used to disguise roving patrolmen. The North Carolina Highway Patrol used them for a pilot program in which troopers patrolled for people who illegally text while driving.

Lieutenant Jeff Gordon says it's hard for roadside troopers to see whether motorists are texting, and people are quick to stop if they see a police cruiser.

“So you need to be creative in ways of trying to get people to abide by the law. I wouldn't classify it as tricking people because it is a law, and laws need to be enforced.”

Interstate 40 traffic
Dave DeWitt

More than 1 million North Carolinians are expected to hit the road for a final summer vacation over this Labor Day holiday weekend.  Low gas prices in North Carolina and surrounding states have made driving the most popular travel choice for vacationers.  

AAA Carolinas spokeswoman Tiffany Wright says another trend they're seeing is people planning trips not far from home.

"For people in the Carolinas, Charlotte is always a big draw," Wright says.