Boats and barbecues are a few ways people pass Memorial Day weekend. With additional safety measures in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) wants you to take roadway safety into account too.

“Social distancing isn’t just for in-person gatherings. Giving others space on the highway helps ensure everyone gets to their destinations safely,” said Melinda McGrath, P.E., MDOT Executive Director.

Last year more than 43 million Americans travelled during Memorial Day weekend, according to AAA estimates. While travel is expected to be down this year as people focus on their health, highway safety should always be your top priority if you choose to travel.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 94 percent of crashes are caused by human error. One of the most important safety steps drivers can take is simply slowing down and paying attention. If your celebration includes alcohol, designate a driver of have a plan in place for a sober ride home.

In addition, motorists should:

  • Obey all speed limits and signs, especially through work zones.
  • Always wear a seatbelt.
  • Never get behind the wheel under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Use your cell phone for emergency situations only.

In observance of the holiday weekend, MDOT will not issue permits for oversize and overweight vehicles on all state and federal highways from Saturday, May 22, through Tuesday, May 26.

For real-time highway updates and more summer travel safety information, like and follow @MississippiDOT on Facebook and Twitter, visit or download the MDOT Traffic mobile app. 

Press Release