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Impaired Driving Crackdown Underway across Dutchess County

Published: 12/20/2012

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Colleen Pillus

If you are attending holiday parties, remember:  Don’t Drink and Drive. Law Enforcement agencies across Dutchess County are participating in a county-wide program to catch impaired drivers this holiday season.  The “Holiday Crackdown” campaign is intended to discourage people from driving impaired, promote awareness, and keep the roadways safe.

The Holiday Crackdown is currently underway and will run through New Year’s Day. Police agencies throughout Dutchess County will be stepping up enforcement efforts to protect the public from drivers who choose to drive while impaired by drugs or alcohol. Motorists who encounter what they suspect is an impaired driver, should call 911 with a description of the vehicle, location and direction of travel.

The Holiday Crackdown enforcement effort is administered by the Dutchess County STOP-DWI program through grant funding awarded from the NYS STOP-DWI Foundation.

“This is an excellent example of state, county, and local law enforcement working collaboratively” said Sheriff Adrian Anderson. Enforcement details will include coordinated multi-agency sobriety checkpoints and targeted saturation patrols with an increased number of drug recognition experts assigned to assist in the identification and apprehension of those impaired by drugs other than alcohol. “Violators face jail time, loss of driver’s license, and steep financial consequences such as higher insurance rates, attorney fees, court costs, and the potential loss of a job” said Dutchess County Sheriff Adrian “Butch” Anderson.

"It's everyone's responsibility to do what they can to keep our roads safe during this holiday season. There are a lot of people out and about during this busy time of year, enjoying themselves and the holiday festivities, and we want everyone to be safe on our roadways,” said Dutchess County STOP-DWI Coordinator William C. Johnson. “If you are caught driving while impaired by alcohol or drugs, you will be arrested. No warnings. No excuses.”

The holiday season is a particularly dangerous time on the roadways. Nationally, in December, approximately 30 percent of all fatalities in motor vehicle traffic crashes involve alcohol-impaired drivers.

“No one ever thinks that their holiday celebration will end in tragedy, but for those who include alcohol in their celebrations and then get behind the wheel, that is far too often the case,” said County Executive Marc Molinaro.

“If you’re planning to drink at a holiday party or event this season, plan ahead to ensure this season is filled with only positive memories,” concluded the County Executive.