(INDIANAPOLIS) - Drive sober or get pulled over. That's the message to Hoosier drivers this week as Indiana law enforcement begins its annual statewide impaired driving crackdown.
Beginning Friday, more than 260 state and local law enforcement agencies will take part in the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign by stepping up their efforts to detect and arrest impaired drivers.
"While alcohol-related collision and fatality rates in Indiana have declined over the past five years, there continue to be far too many lives lost as a result of impaired drivers," said Ryan Klitzsch, ICJI Traffic Safety Division Director. "Impaired driving is a preventable crime," he continued. "Before you have your first drink, plan ahead on how you will get safely home, you could save someone's life."
In 2010, a total of 135 people were killed in crashes involving an alcohol-impaired driver. In fact, of the more than 4,900 alcohol-related collisions that occurred on Indiana roadways last year, nearly 30 percent resulted in death or injury.
High-visibility enforcement activities such as sobriety checkpoints and saturation patrols will be conducted around the clock, however, patrols will be especially numerous during the weekend and nighttime hours. Research indicates that twice as many alcohol-impaired collisions occur over the weekend. That incidence increases significantly during the nighttime hours.
"Officers will be dedicating hundreds of overtime hours towards keeping Indiana roadways safe from impaired drivers," Klitzsch added. "The efforts of our law enforcement partners have been instrumental in educating Hoosiers about the dangers and consequences of impaired driving."
Law enforcement agencies across the nation are also participating in the drive sober or get pulled over effort, which includes paid media and public awareness campaigns geared to raise awareness about the dangers of impaired driving.
The drive sober or get pulled over campaign will continue through Labor Day weekend.
For more information, visit NHTSA'S high-visibility enforcement campaign headquarters at www.stopimpaireddriving.org.
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