Minnesota State Patrol continues ‘high-intensity’ crackdown this weekend

Those heading to one of the numerous events throughout the Twin Cities this weekend are warned to watch the speed and distractions, or risk getting a ticket.

A team of Minnesota State Patrol troopers will conduct the second of five "high-intensity patrols" as part of Project 20(22). According to the State Patrol, the project is an effort to "prioritize enforcement of speed, seat belt use and distraction… The goal is to have a visible presence and protect motorists during busy times on the roads and for drivers to see the extra patrols and choose to make safe driving decisions."

East metro freeways throughout Chisago, Dakota and Washington counties will see up to 15 additional troopers starting Friday at 2:00 p.m., and ending at 8:00 p.m. Sunday.

Previously the program was held from May 13 to 15 in the Brainerd Lakes area, stopping more than 700 vehicles throughout three days.

"The first weekend of Project 20(22) in May was a big success," Col. Matt Langer, Minnesota State Patrol chief said in a statement. "Our troopers worked really hard to stop drivers who were breaking the law and endangering themselves and other motorists. This continued enforcement will help make Minnesota roads safer by stopping dangerous driving behaviors. Our message remains simple: buckle up, drive the speed limit, plan a sober ride and always pay attention."

Through June 19, there have been 155 traffic-related deaths in Minnesota, according to the State Patrol.

Earlier in the year the agency announced it would have increased patrols over a 10-day stretch as part of its Highway Enforcement for Aggressive Traffic (HEAT) program.