Highway Patrol hopes to stop shoulder parking along interstates

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HIGH POINT, N.C. -- State troopers across North Carolina will be watching for both drivers moving too fast along the interstates and cars off the side of the roads not moving at all.

On Wednesday, the Department of Public Safety announced the Highway Patrol will put a new focus on making sure cars that are pulled off the side of interstates across North Carolina are doing so due to emergency reasons.

The group is trying to crack down on drivers pulling over on the state’s busiest roads for a break from driving.

“With the increased traffic volume across the state, it is imperative that we keep our highways free of roadside hazards to include improperly parked vehicles,” said Colonel Bill Grey, commander of the Highway Patrol.

Over the last five years, records show that in nearly 20 percent of deadly wrecks a car parked on the side of the road was a factor in the crash.

Piedmont Triad drivers said when they come upon a car pulled over to the side of the road they approach with caution.

“You never know if someone is going to open the car door or someone going to come around the car and end up on the highway,” said LaRue Green. “With the laws here you're supposed to move over into the next lane and I definitely try to do that.”

The effort is in conjunction with the North Carolina Trucker’s Association. Highway Patrol said state troopers will also be making sure that cars and trucks don’t use on and off ramps to interstates as a place for drivers to rest.