Drivers hit the road for their first holiday with looser COVID restrictions

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GOOCHLAND, Va. (WRIC)— With the arrival of Memorial Day weekend and looser COVID-19 restrictions, more people are hitting the roads to travel for the holiday.

A steady flow of cars passed by on Interstate 64 east near the Goochland Area Rest Stop. A few of those travelers stopped for a cool drink and to stretch their legs, like driver Terrence Wagner.

He said he’s traveling to meet his grandson for the first time since the pandemic started. His grandson is celebrating his first birthday this weekend. 
“It’s enjoyable for me to be able to get out on the road again,” said Wagner.

He plans to take more trips to Virginia and get back into the activities he’s been missing out on during the pandemic.

“Visit historic sites for one thing, maybe take some hikes up in the hills since I couldn’t get out this way last time I was here which was just at the beginning of the pandemic,” said Wagner.

Virginia State Police troopers are reminding drivers to buckle up and travel safely as part of the annual Operation C.A.R.E program. It’s an effort to reduce traffic crashes and deaths caused by speeding, unfastened seatbelt and impaired driving.

Drivers like Lin Arnette said she will keep tips from State police on her mind.

“I think it’s wonderful that we are going to get back to normal,” she said.

Arnette is from Charlottesville and is preparing to travel and participate in her favorite hobbies again.

“Hopefully I’ll do more fishing and hit the beach,” she said.

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