SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Not only is it a busy time of year preparing for family gatherings and Christmas celebrations, but South Dakota roads are also busy as more people get behind the wheel to get to their holiday destinations.

As we get closer to Christmas, travelers will be out on South Dakota roads heading to holiday gatherings.

“We do see an increase in traffic volume, not only in Sioux Falls but across the state,” South Dakota Highway Patrol, lieutenant, Isaac Kurtz said.

That means more troopers are out making sure people are following the laws.

“We do have increased manpower out there during the high traffic times, to try to prevent crashes so people can get to their location safely,” Kurtz said.

Some of the things Kurtz says they are looking for while out patrolling are seatbelt violations, speeding, and impaired driving.

“We have saturation patrols during the month of December and also sobriety checkpoints,” Kurtz said.

Brenda Deffenbaugh stopped by a local gas station this morning.

She says while she isn’t traveling over the holidays this year, she has family coming to visit.

And she wants everyone to get to where they need to go safely.

“Wear your seatbelt, drive the speed limit, drive the road conditions so if you have to drive a little slower and get there safely, rather than not getting there at all,” driver Brenda Deffenbaugh said.

Kurtz says leaving early and taking your time is also a good idea.

“Another thing is distracted driving, put the cell phone down, GPS, radios, we see a lot of distracted driving crashes, and that’s just one less thing that you can worry about and just focus on the driving,” Kurtz said.

Kurtz says to also make sure you aren’t overdriving the road conditions. We’ve provided a link to the 511 road conditions map here.