Thursday, August 26, 2010

"Over the Limit. Under Arrest" Drunk Driving Enforcement Underway Through Labor Day

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will be running their drunk driving campaign called "Over the limit. Under arrest."

Already underway, and running through September 6 (Labor Day weekend), the crackdown includes increased police enforcement and checkpoints on the road, as well as TV and radio campaigns to warn drivers of the risks.

Fortunately, much of the tragedy that results from impaired-driving crashes could be prevented if everyone followed these safety recommendations:
  • If you are planning to drink alcohol with friends, designate a sober driver before going out — and give that person your keys.
  • If you are impaired, do not drive — call a taxi, use mass transit, or call a sober friend or family member to get you home safely; or, take advantage of your community’s safe ride program.
  • Promptly report impaired drivers you see on the roadways to law enforcement.
  • Wear your seat belt while in a car or use a helmet and protective gear when on a motorcycle, as these are your best defenses against impaired drivers.
  • If you know people who are about to drive or ride while impaired, take their keys — and help them get to where they are going safely.
Since the annual NHTSA operation started back in 2003, it has been credited with helping to reduce drunk-driving accidents and fatalities. While the numbers have gone down slightly since 1994, alcohol-related crashes are still a major problem and continue to be responsible for about a third of all vehicle deaths. Almost 12,000 people, or 32 percent of all fatal crashes, were killed by drivers of passenger vehicles or motorcycles who had a blood-alcohol-content of at or above the legal limit of .08 percent in 2008. Young people age 21-24 have the highest percentage of deaths from drunk driving.

Virginia crash data.

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