Law enforcement stiffens for the Labor Day weekend

MILWAUKEE -- Law enforcement will be out in force during the Labor Day weekend. They're trying to shrink the number of people killed in alcohol-related crashes.

There were 225 deaths attributed to alcohol-related crashes in Wisconsin in 2011. Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke said during a news conference on Thursday, August 30th, his deputies will be covering all 158 miles of freeway in the county looking for speeders and drunk drivers.

"I want to remind everyone in Milwaukee County, impaired driving comes with certain and severe consequences," Sheriff Clarke said.

Special attention will be paid to what Sheriff Clarke has dubbed "Death Valley" -- the stretch of Interstate-94 from the Milwaukee lakefront to the Waukesha County line.

Drivers that FOX6 News talked with on Thursday said they welcome the extra attention on the roadways.

"It makes me feel better when I see them on the road," Judy Williams said.

"I usually travel on the weekends and holidays and I notice them on the freeways and it's a good thing," Scott Fischer said.

In all, 288 squads will be out on the roads. That includes deputies as well as squads from communities throughout southeast Wisconsin. Drivers will also notice more speed trailers and digital signs to warn them of the speed limit.

"Education, combined with enforcement will make a difference," Sheriff Clarke said.

AAA predicts more than 600,000 Wisconsin drivers will be traveling during the Labor Day weekend. Patrols to watch over those drivers start in earnest on Friday, August 31st and continue through Labor Day.