BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial beginning of Summer travel. If you plan to hit the road for this weekend, you’re not alone. AAA says it expects nearly 3-million Californians to travel for Memorial Day Weekend, with about 2.5 million driving. This comes as the pandemic shows signs of fading away.
“For the holiday mainly it’s just to hang out with family, maybe go to the beach and keep our distance from everybody else,” said Bakersfield Resident David Sangis. “My family’s all vaccinated so we’re not too worried.
Experts say you should take a close look at your car before taking a long trip.
“Over the next 5 days, AAA anticipates coming to the roadside rescue of over 115,000 stranded drivers here in California alone,” said Doug Shupe, Auto Club Spokesperson for AAA. “For dead batteries, flat tires, and people locking themselves out of their vehicles.”
Police say flat tires aren’t the only danger facing travelers this weekend.
“We historically see an increase in drinking and driving during three-day weekends, and we have more people driving,” said Sgt. Robert Pair, Public Information Officer for the Bakersfield Police Department. “That can sometimes be a recipe for disaster.”
AAA says following speed limits and staying prepared can keep your family safe on the road.
“Get at least seven hours of good sleep before a road trip, and don’t drive ‘intexticated,'” said Shupe. “Remember using those smartphones behind the wheel can be just as deadly as getting behind the wheel after drinking alcohol.”
If you’re staying in Kern for Memorial Day weekend, you can find a list of events around the county here.