Beaches, hotels, roads will be filled this Labor Day weekend

The 100 Deadly Days of Summer, when traffic deaths are the highest, come to an end over Labor Day weekend.

There will be a heavy police presence on the Grand Strand over the holiday weekend.

At the same time, a pleasant weekend weather forecast is helping to fill Grand Strand beaches.

Coastal Carolina University's Center for Resort Tourism expects 80 percent hotel occupancy this weekend, about the same as last year.

But the Hampton Inn Oceanfront in Myrtle Beach is sold out for the weekend, making this Labor Day the best for the hotel since the Great Recession.

"It's coming slowly, things are beginning to churn, a couple new properties are up in the center of town," said Hampton Inn manager Tom Moor. "I think the economy's hopefully on the upswing, but it's going to be slow."

Moore says his hotel's business is up one or two percent over last Labor Day.

All those beach-goers means more cars on Grand Strand roads and SC Highway Patrol will be on the lookout for dangerous drivers.

If you think people driving drunk are only on the road late at night, troopers say think again.

"We have encountered impaired drivers all during the daytime hours, nighttime hours and any day of week. Buckling your seat belt, and just being that defensive driver is your best defense," said Highway Patrol Cpl. Sonny Collins.

Collins says the number of deadly crashes statewide is down. The Department of Public Safety reports 82 fewer people have died on state roads so far this year.

Collins says DPS will do some research to figure out why, and then try to make sure the downward trend continues.

"Was it seat belt usage, was it the high visibility enforcement, the education? And that way we can finish the year off with less fatalities than we had last year."

The worst time for traffic tieups will be around hotel check-in and check-out times. Collins advises drivers to keep that in mind as they travel this weekend.