More cops, more stops if you're traveling this Thanksgiving

(WMC-TV) - Deputies in Shelby, Tipton, and Fayette counties have been singled out to help keep you safe on this, one of the busiest travel weekends of the year.

"Please, make arrangements if you're gonna have something to drink, make arrangements to have someone drive you," said Lt. Shannon Beasley with the Tipton County Sheriff's Department.

Using a 'more cops, more stops' approach, deputies will be out making sure drivers abide by the law.

In addition to drinking and driving, police and the Highway Patrol will be looking for seat belt violators, proper license and registration, and of course speeding.

"We'll have rolling saturations where we target a certain area. We don't specifically set up, we ride that area and we also have checkpoints," Beasley said.

Shelby, Tipton, and Fayette counties are participating in the COMET program. COMET stands for Combined Messaging Enforcement in Tennessee. In conjunction with the Governor's Highway Safety Program, COMET puts more cops on the streets and pays for the overtime spent to keep them working additional hours.

Research shows that in most cases, increased police presence means fewer accidents.

In Tipton County, there have been five fewer fatal traffic accidents year to date from last year. Fayette County has decreased their number of fatal crashes by two, and Shelby County traffic fatalities are up four from this time last year.

And in the entire state of Tennessee, there are over 100 fewer fatal crashes year to date.

Deputies hope those numbers will stay down as long as there are more patrols hitting the streets and checking Thanksgiving travelers.

Copyright 2011 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.