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Holiday precaution

Kids know all too well what the upcoming weekend signifies: Pool season is officially opening.

While adults might be preparing the house for guests, planning a cookout, packing for a quick road trip, or simply ready to relax, they too know what Memorial Day weekend signifies: The start of summer.

This holiday finds a significant number of people on the highway. AAA Kansas estimates 14 percent of the population will be traveling, the vast majority by automobile. Two things can be counted on -- gas prices will be half-a-dollar higher per gallon than last year at this time and the number of law enforcement officers patrolling the roadways will be just as high.

The most prominent along Interstate 70 will be the Kansas Highway Patrol. Working with funding provided by the Kansas Department of Transportation, KHP will beef up staffing for the next two weeks to enforce seatbelt laws, ensure child passenger safety, remove impaired drivers from the road, and deal with other traffic concerns.

"We hope all of those traveling during the Memorial Day weekend have safe travels, as well as throughout the rest of the upcoming summer months," said Col. Ernest E. Garcia, KHP superintendent, in a press release.

We would encourage all motorists to heed the warning. The same for those headed to lakes. Holiday weekends tend to feature increased enforcement on the water as well.

Holidays shouldn't be all about safety warnings. However, statistics generally indicate higher incidence rates on such weekends. And we don't want anybody's celebration dampened by an unfortunate accident or a preventable ticket or arrest.

Memorial Day weekend is to be enjoyed. We hope yours is full of laughs, good times and safe.

Editorial by Patrick Lowry

plowry@dailynews.net