Los Angeles County Gets Ready for Holiday DUI Enforcement
Law enforcement agencies in Los Angeles County are getting ready for the holiday season, which is the busiest time of the year when it comes to drunk driving arrests. According to KHTS Radio, this enforcement period goes from Dec. 15 to Jan. 1. The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department has announced that it is partnering with the California Office of Traffic Safety and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in a special year-end Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign.
The goal of this program is to get impaired drivers off the street and to create more public awareness particularly during the holidays when many of us indulge in parties and gatherings. As part of holiday DUI enforcement, police, sheriff and the California Highway Patrol will be deploying DUI checkpoints and DUI saturation patrols during the crackdown period.
Danger of DUI Crashes
Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs can have lethal consequences. In the year 2016, 37,461 people were killed in auto accidents and 28 percent of those people (10,497) died in crashes when a driver had a blood alcohol concentration of BAC of more than 0.08. Statewide, there were 1,059 DUI deaths in 2016 where the driver had a BAC of .08 or higher.
California has also been trending upward when it comes to drug-impaired crashes leading to the new holiday campaign: “DUI Doesn’t Just Mean Booze.” And it’s not just about marijuana or other illicit recreational drugs. If you take prescription medication or even over-the-counter drugs that can make you sleepy, drowsy or impaired, the consequences can be devastating.
Safety tips for the Holidays
The best action you can take if you plan on celebrating with family and friends this holiday season is to plan ahead. Before you start drinking, plan about how you will get home. This could include designating a sober driver or calling a cab or rideshare service that will take you home safely. You may also want to download the Designated Driver VIP or DDVIP app that helps you find nearby bars and eateries that offer free incentives for a designated sober driver such as free non-alcoholic drinks and complimentary appetizers.
If you are hosting a party, be sure to make sure no one leaves your party drunk. Take the keys away from anyone who is too impaired to drive. Serve plenty of food and non-alcoholic drinks. Stop serving alcohol well before the end of the party and start serving coffee and dessert instead. Offer your home to anyone who wants to stay the night instead of driving away the same night. Finally, if you have been drinking, please do not drive. Do the responsible thing and have a safe holiday!