As Thanksgiving travelers hit the roadways, all available Texas Highway Patrol troopers will be looking for drivers who are endangering themselves and others by breaking traffic laws.

Troopers are participating in Operation CARE - Combined Accident Reduction Effort - a nationwide effort by police agencies to reduce fatalities on major interstate highways during holiday weekends.

A few of the violations that troopers will be looking for are speeding, driving while intoxicated and drivers and passengers who are not wearing safety belts or who do not have children buckled in safely.

During the Wednesday through Sunday Thanksgiving period last year, DPS troopers wrote 16,794 citations for speeding and 607 for driving while intoxicated, plus 41 for minors driving under the influence. They also wrote 2,390 citations for seatbelt violations and 282 for child restraint violations. DPS has a no-warnings policy for seat belt and child restraint violations.

“DPS wants all drivers on Texas roads to have a safe Thanksgiving holiday,” said Col. Thomas A. Davis Jr., director of the DPS. “Highway Patrol troopers will be out in force to remind drivers that in order to arrive safely at their destination, they should follow Texas traffic laws by driving sober, not speeding and remembering to buckle up.”

DPS expects a large number of travelers on the road and encourages drivers to leave themselves plenty of time to get where they’re going.

Avoid bad driving habits that lead to road rage, such as:

Not using turn signals Driving in the passing lane Tailgating, flashing lights or honking Using high beams in traffic Not allowing adequate time for a given trip

When confronted with aggressive drivers, the DPS recommends that you:

Put your pride in the back seat and move aside Do not speed up, block lanes, slam or tap on brakes Report extreme cases of reckless driving to the appropriate authorities when the incident occurs Do not retaliate, gesture or make eye contact Make sure everyone is buckled up.