This holiday season, officers with the Hazard Police Department will be out in force cracking down on drunk drivers throughout the region with aggressive “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” enforcement. From Dec. 13, 2013, to Jan. 1, 2014, state and local law enforcement will be watching for drunk drivers to help keep roads safe for holiday travelers.
The Hazard Police Department is giving fair warning to all partygoers. “You’ll see us making lots of traffic stops during this highly visible enforcement period and if we suspect anyone is driving while intoxicated, officers will show zero tolerance for drunk driving,” said Major James East.
Unfortunately, the excitement and celebrations of the holiday season can lead to terrible decisions—and serious legal consequences.
Data shows that the holiday season is a particularly deadly time due to the increased number of drunk drivers on the roads, and the Hazard Police Department is prepared to stop and arrest any drunk drivers they see to keep roads safe.
Nationally, in the Decembers from 2007 to 2011 there were 4,169 people killed in crashes that involved drivers with blood alcohol concentrations of .08 grams per deciliter or higher.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 32,367 people were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes across the nation in 2011, and 31 percent (9,878) of those fatalities occurred in drunk-driving-related crashes.
“The December holiday season is the ‘most wonderful time of the year,’ and we are going to keep our roads safe for travelers heading to visit friends and family,” East said. “This holiday, we will show zero tolerance for drunk drivers on the road. If you choose to drive drunk, we will see you, we will stop you, and you will be arrested.”
Drunk drivers often face jail time, the loss of their driver licenses, higher insurance rates, and dozens of other unanticipated expenses ranging from attorney fees, court costs, car towing and repairs, to lost wages due to time off from work. Even worse, a drunk driver can cause a traffic crash that claims someone’s life, or their own.
Please follow these tips to keep the holidays safe and happy:
• Even one drink can impair your judgment and increase the risk of getting arrested for driving drunk—or worse, the risk of having a crash while driving.
• If you will be drinking, do not plan on driving. Plan ahead; designate a sober driver before the party begins.
• If you have been drinking, do not drive. Call a taxi, phone a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation. Be responsible. If someone you know is drinking, do not let that person get behind the wheel.
• If you see an impaired driver on the road, contact law enforcement. Your actions may save someone’s life, and inaction could cost a life.
Remember, it is never safe to drink and drive: Drive sober or get pulled over.
For more information, visit www.trafficsafetymarketing.gov.