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Highway Safety Officials Ask Everyone To Drive Sober This New Years Eve

Date Posted: Thursday, December 27th, 2012
Categories:  News Office of Highway Safety Safety and Homeland Security

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2 killed in impaired driving crashes over Christmas

Dover – Many will be celebrating New Year’s Eve at various social gatherings, dancing, eating, and drinking to ring in the new year.  Highway safety officials are asking everyone to drive sober or have a designated driver before the celebrations start.

According to police reports, there were 2 impaired driving crashes over Christmas that resulted in 2 people killed and 3 injured.   Since Thanksgiving of this year Delaware has seen fifty-seven (57) persons injured and five (5) killed in impaired driving crashes.  Last year the holiday season ended with 2 persons killed and 24 persons injured in impaired-driving crashes.

“Impaired driving crashes kill too many innocent lives on our roadways every year and the unfortunate part is that they are all preventable crashes,” said Jana Simpler, Director of the Office of Highway Safety. “This tragic loss of life can be reduced if we continue to remove impaired drivers off our roadways with checkpoints and patrols, and if everyone designates a sober driver before the party starts or calls a taxi cab for a safe ride home.”

Last weekend 10 people were arrested for DUI as part of Checkpoint Strikeforce.  This brings the total campaign DUI arrests to 328, however there have been 4,795 DUI arrests made in Delaware since January 1st.

There are four checkpoints scheduled to occur this weekend as follows:

Friday December 28th                        New Castle- (DSP) – checkpoint

Longneck- (DSP) – checkpoint

Saturday December 29th                    Smyrna- (multi-jurisdictional effort) – checkpoint

Monday December 31st                       Wilmington- (New Castle County DUI Task Force) – checkpoint

Preventing impaired driving crashes is a shared responsibility; everyone can do their part to save a life:

  • Always plan ahead to designate a non-drinking driver before any party or celebration begins.
  • Never get behind the wheel of a car when you’ve been drinking alcohol and never ride with someone who has been drinking – even after just one drink.
  • Do not hesitate to take the keys from friends or family members who may be impaired or call a taxi for a friend in need.
  • Be a responsible host by always offering alcohol-free beverages and protein rich snacks.
  • If you encounter an impaired driver on the road, keep a safe distance and ask a passenger to call 911 (or pull over to a safe location to make the call yourself).
  • Remember: prescriptions, over-the-counter medications and illegal drugs also can impair your ability to drive safely.
  • Always buckle up, avoid distractions, and practice patience behind the wheel this holiday season.

OHS provides suggestions and recipes for non-alcoholic drinks and smart party snacks online at http://www.ohs.delaware.gov/pdfs/2009/safe_family_holiday/OHS_Mocktail_Recipe_Book_v2.pdf

For more information on these or any of our other campaign efforts follow us on Twitter @DEHighwaySafe, visit our website for updates at www.ohs.delaware.gov, www.DUIRealTime.com/Safe-Holidays or Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ArriveAliveDE.

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