Chesterton Tribune



Duneland police blitzing roads in the runup to Labor Day weekend

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If you drink and drive in Northern Porter County beware. The Northern Porter County Traffic Safety Partnership (NPCTSP)--comprised of the Chesterton, Porter, Burns Harbor, and Ogden Dunes police departments--is joining with law enforcement agencies throughout the nation for the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign Aug. 8 to Sept. 1.

This “strong nationwide impaired driving crackdown will include high-visibility enforcement, high-profile events, and will be supported by national paid advertising, creating a comprehensive campaign to curb alcohol impaired driving in August and through the Labor Day holiday weekend,” NPCTSP said in a statement released today.

“Officers will be aggressively looking for impaired drivers during the crackdown and will arrest anyone caught driving impaired,” CPD Lt. David Lohse said.

It is illegal in all 50 States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico to drive with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 grams per deciliter. Despite these laws, in 2012 more than 10,000 people died in alcohol-impaired driving crashes.

“On average there is one alcohol impaired driving-related fatality every 51 minutes across America,” Lohse said. “But this tragic loss of life can be reduced if we get impaired drivers off our roadways. Research has shown that high-visibility enforcement like the 'Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over' campaign reduces alcohol-impaired driving fatalities by as much as 20 percent. By joining this nationwide effort, we will make the Northern Porter County’s roadways safer for everyone throughout the Labor Day period.”

In 2013, there were 5,503 alcohol-related traffic crashes in Indiana. During the 2013 Labor Day holiday period (Aug. 30 to Sept. 2), there were 88 alcohol-related crashes in Indiana. During last year’s Labor Day Crackdown, there were 12,108 citations issued, 714 misdemeanor OWIs, and 93 felony OWIs.

“Obviously we want to remind everyone that it is illegal to drive impaired, and we hope the campaign will remind people that if they plan on drinking, to never get behind the wheel,” Lohse said. “But if someone does choose to drive impaired, we will arrest them. No warnings. No excuses.”

Violators face jail time, loss of their driver’s 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 impaired is simply not worth the risk,” Lohse said. “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.’”



Posted 8/8/2014