State Patrol concerned about fatigued drivers

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) -- With some stores opening earlier than ever on Thanksgiving for Black Friday, Colorado State Patrol troopers are concerned about more drunk and fatigued drivers on the roads.

CSP Trooper Dan Chermok said many will likely go straight from Thanksgiving dinner to the shops, without getting any sleep in between.

"Once you've gone a long time without sleep, your driving habits can be just about as dangerous as being a drunk driver," Chermok said.

CSP is running its "Heat is On" crackdown throughout the weekend and will have extra troopers out patrolling for drunk drivers, as well as various DUI checkpoints set up throughout the Grand Valley.

Mesa Mall staff said they believe having stores opened earlier-- and opened at different times-- will improve safety at the mall.

"We're thinking that's really going to help with traffic flow especially coming interior to the doors and make it a lot safer shopping entry for every body that's coming out," said Mesa Mall Marketing Director Chelsi Reimer.

Reimer said there will not be anyone directing traffic outside the mall and encourages everyone to take extra precaution in the parking lots.

"Everybody is going to be really excited but if you could just pay attention slow down a little bit, all the great stuff is still going to be here when you get inside," Reimer said.

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