BEND, Ore. -

Over the Thanksgiving holiday season, the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office will be increasing traffic patrols during the nighttime hours to focus on DUII enforcement.

Through Dec. 2, county sheriffs will team up with Oregon Department of Transportation to encourage all drivers and passengers to make a conscious effort to be safe during their holiday travels.

Sgt. Troy Gotchy said there have been more alcohol-related fatalities during Thanksgiving than on New Year's Eve.

“For us, this is important, because our main job is to keep the community safe, and clearly this is an issue, and has been an issue for the last several years,” Gotchy said.

Gotchy also said the extra patrol will be monitoring seatbelt use throughout the week. As a reminder, law enforcement says to please slow down or move over for any vehicles displaying flashing lights on the side of the roadway.