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By NEWSROOM /
August 15 03:13 PM

BOSSIER SHERIFF’S OFFICE JOINS NATIONAL CRACKDOWN TO REDUCE DRUNK DRIVING FATALITIES

‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ Campaign Will Target Drunk Drivers

bso traffic stop
Sgt. Jeff Pleasants, Traffic Team Leader with the Bossier Sheriff’s Office, conducts a traffic stop and encourages all motorists that drinking and driving is simply not worth the risk. Deputies will be aggressively looking for drunk drivers all throughout Bossier Parish during the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign from Aug. 16 to Sept. 2. - Photo by Lt. Bill Davis, Bossier Sheriff’s Office.

 Bossier Sheriff Julian Whittington is cracking down on drunk driving over the next couple of week as deputies with the Bossier Sheriff’s Office will be out in force from mid-August through Labor Day as part of the annual nationwide “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign. 

“My deputies will be aggressively looking for drunk drivers during the crackdown and will arrest anyone caught driving drunk,” said Sheriff Whittington.  “Deputies will provide high-visibility enforcement and saturation patrols all throughout Bossier Parish from Aug. 16 through Sept. 2 to get impaired drivers off of the streets and reduce crashes and fatalities.”

Although it is illegal in all 50 States, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico to drive drunk (having a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher), far too many people across the nation get behind the wheel after consuming too much alcohol.  The latest statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration underscore the serious nature of the nation’s continuing drunk driving epidemic.

“Every year, about one third of all motor vehicle traffic deaths involve one or more drunk drivers or motorcycle operators,” said Sheriff Whittington.  “In 2011, 9,878 people died in crashes involving drunk drivers.  That works out to approximately one drunk driving fatality every 53 minutes.”

Sheriff Whittington added that holidays such as the Labor Day holiday are particularly dangerous.  Also, 
drunk driving takes a particularly heavy toll among young drivers.  Among 18- to 34-year-old drivers killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes during the 2011 Labor Day weekend, 42 percent were alcohol-impaired.

“Research has shown that high-visibility enforcement like the 'Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over' campaign reduces drunk driving fatalities by as much as 20 percent.  By joining this nationwide effort, we will make Bossier roadways safer for everyone throughout the Labor Day period,” said Sheriff Whittington.

For Sgt. Jeff Pleasants, Traffic Team Leader with the Bossier Sheriff’s Office, it’s about making smart choices when behind the wheel of 4,000-pound vehicle.

“We want to remind everyone that getting behind the wheel drunk is a terrible idea,” Pleasants said.  “Unfortunately, not only does drinking impair your ability to operate a vehicle safely, it also impairs your judgment and good sense about whether you can, or should drive.  If you have any doubt about your sobriety, do not get behind the wheel.  If you do chose to drive impaired, you will be arrested.  No warnings. No excuses,” Pleasants reiterated. 

 Pleasants noted that being arrested for driving drunk brings a wide range of negative consequences into one’s life.  Drunk drivers face jail time, loss of their driver licenses, and steep financial consequences such as higher insurance rates, attorney fees, court costs, lost time at work, and the potential loss of job. When family, friends and co-workers find out, violators also often face tremendous personal embarrassment.

“Driving drunk is simply not worth the risk. So don’t take the chance. Remember, we will be out in force, and we will be watching, so ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over,’” said Sgt. Pleasants.

For more information, visit the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” Campaign Headquarters at www.TrafficSafetyMarketing.gov.

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