CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Local law enforcement agencies throughout Central Virginia are urging drivers to use caution on the roads Sunday night, particularly as the Super Bowl wraps and wet roads near freezing temperatures.

The Chesterfield County Police Department (CCPD) is one such agency, with extra officers on duty to thwart unsafe driving behaviors.

“With it being Super Bowl Sunday, we’re going to be out there in force,” said Sergeant Stephan Rouze with CCPD. “We have officers out in extra force, specifically targeting drivers that are driving recklessly; speeding and driving intoxicated.”

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2019, 10,142 traffic deaths involved drunk driving. In the Commonwealth, Virginia State Police (VSP) reported 26 alcohol-related crashes that resulted in 15 injuries and two deaths on Feb. 7, 2021, the day of Super Bowl LV.

“We have to respond to all the fatal crashes, we have to respond to all those crashes where people get injured and have life-changing injuries, and that stuff does wear on us,” Rouze said. “When we see that, it becomes our mission to go out there to enforce the law, to get people to slow down, to get people to drive sober, and to do the right thing.”

Local and state agencies also warned drivers to be cautious of wet roads with the potential for refreeze. The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) said that slick conditions are being addressed with a combination of salt, which melts ice, and/or sand, which provides traction.

“Tonight and tomorrow morning could be tricky for drivers,” Acting Richmond District Maintenance Engineer Gary Jennings said. “Drivers heading to and from Super Bowl events, or heading out to work Monday morning, should use the utmost caution. Assume that any wet pavement could be slick. Air temperatures will be low tonight and any pavement that has not had the chance to dry could become icy.”

Drivers are urged to use caution and limit travel overnight. But for those who must be on the roads, VDOT recommends leaving extra room between vehicles while driving.

“When the roadways are wet and it’s snowing outside and temperature’s dropping, you’ve got the likelihood of the road freezing,” Rouze said. “You’re going to have stopping distances that increase. You need to increase your following distance, you need to slow down, need to pay attention to what’s going on around you.”

Rouze said that CCPD’s ultimate goal is to make sure that everyone gets home safetly.

“Part of that is enforcement,” he said. “Whether it’s a lapse of judgment or people just being reckless, we do see unsafe driving practices out there, and it’s out job to make sure that we hold those people accountable, and if we stop you for speeding or doing anything dangerous, you will be cited or taken to jail if you’re driving drunk.”