Memorial Day is a week away, but efforts to make the roadways safe for the holiday begin today.State, county and city law officers across Iowa are participating in a STEP, or Special Traffic Enforcement Program, today through next Monday. They’ll be targeting traffic violations, especially drunk driving. Lu Simpson coordinates Iowa’s effort through the Governor’s Traffic Safety Bureau. Simpson says they want to get people in a good driving habit prior to the Memorial Day holiday. Simpson says extra officers will be on the highways at various times. Simpson says they’re focusing on stopping young people from drinking, because this is the time of year when there are a lot of graduation parties and proms, and they’re targeting young people to keep them from drinking and driving. Simpson believes the extra effort to get folks to wear seat belts is paying off.Iowa last year went from 78-percent seat belt usage rate to 81-percent in 2001, which she says is indication people are listening to the message.
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