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Fishing opener creates traffic safety concerns

The fishing opener weekend of May 10-11 will be a busy traffic period, especially in northern Minnesota, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS).

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“Some of the main concerns are drivers who are not paying attention, following too closely and speeding, especially around the lakes areas,” said Sgt. Jesse Grabow, regional public information officer. “Drivers are strongly encouraged to buckle up, take your time and pay strict attention to your driving.”

Drivers are also asked to keep an eye on their following distance and stay back far enough to prevent a crash with the vehicle ahead.

“Normally, the three-second following distance rule is taught, but many northbound travelers during the fishing opener and all summer are pulling trailers with boats or ATVs, campers, and the like – all of which would require following at a distance of at least 500 feet, which would be farther back than the three-second rule,” Grabow said.

Motorists should be aware of all the safety rules for trailers, trailer equipment and for all special mobile equipment they are transporting to the area for recreation.

Grabow added, “Just slow down, buckle up, drive sober and pay attention, and we can all be a lot safer this fishing opener.”