Don’t Push Your Luck This St. Patrick’s Day – Designate a Sober Driver

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact:
Cynthia Cavett, Delaware Office of Highway Safety, (302) 744-2743
Kellie Boulware, MDOT MVA, 410-762-5188
Brandy Brubaker, Virginia DMV, 804-367-6834

 

Joint Effort Targets Impaired Drivers Along US 13 and US 113 in Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia

 

Dover, DE (March 15, 2019) – The Delaware Office of Highway Safety, Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration (MDOT MVA), law enforcement and transportation officials from Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia, have partnered for the second year to save lives on our roadways during the St. Patrick’s Day weekend. Law enforcement from 36 agencies across the three states will team up for a High Visibility Enforcement (HVE) effort on US 13 and US 113 throughout the Delmarva Peninsula.

In 2017, there were 39 DUI-related fatal crashes in the state of Delaware and 3,997 DUI arrests. In 2018, there were two DUI-related fatalities during St. Patrick’s Day weekend. Over the last five years, a total of 228 impaired driving arrests occurred for the same holiday period.

“All of us here at the Delaware Office of Highway Safety would like to thank our partner agencies for working together to have a greater impact on reducing impaired driving. It is through coordinated efforts like this along US 13 and US 113, that we can increase awareness and safety for all motorists on our roads,” said Richard Klepner, Delaware Office of Highway Safety, Impaired Driving Program Manager. Delaware motorists can text “saferide” to 99000 for a link to download Lyft and Uber apps or get a list of local companies providing safe rides. The state of Maryland is conducting multiple enforcements on US 13 where there were 138 crashes from 2013 – 2016 resulting from alcohol and/or drug impairment. During last year’s effort participating agencies in Maryland issued 125 citations, including 45 for speeding, and made four impaired driving arrests.

“This effort is a great example of state and local law enforcement agencies joining forces to save lives on our roadways,” said Chrissy Nizer, Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration (MDOT MVA) Administrator.

In Virginia, there were 278 alcohol-related fatalities in 2018, which is 34 percent of overall traffic deaths. The chance of being in an alcohol-related crash in Virginia is one-in-six over the course of a lifetime.

“Reducing and ultimately eliminating drunk driving will go a long way toward reaching our goal of zero deaths on Virginia roadways,” said Virginia DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb, the Governor’s Highway Safety Representative. “Law enforcement agencies partnering across state lines sends a strong message to drivers — we are committed to saving lives and vow to work together to make our roadways safer for everyone.”

Saturation patrols will run throughout the US 13 and US 113 corridors in the three states with law enforcement on the lookout for impaired drivers. US 13 is comprised of 289 total miles – 137 in Virginia; 103 in Delaware; and 49 in Maryland. It houses approximately 150 establishments with liquor licenses along its length in Maryland alone.

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About the Delaware Office of Highway Safety
The Office of Highway Safety (OHS) is committed to improving the safety of Delaware’s motoring public by focusing on behavioral traffic safety issues such as impaired driving, seat belt use, speeding, child passenger safety, pedestrian and bicycle safety, motorcycle safety, and teen driving issues. FAQs can be found at ArriveAliveDE.com.

 

Delaware Office of Highway Safety logo


Delaware Office of Highway Safety Kicks Off The Safe Family Holiday Campaign

DUI checkpoints in place on Wednesday, Nov. 21, ahead of Thanksgiving weekend

DOVER, DE (Nov. 19, 2018) The Delaware Office of Highway Safety (OHS) has announced the kickoff of The Safe Family Holiday Campaign and the theme “It’s The Most Dangerous Time of the Year”, running through Tuesday, January 1, 2019.  The awareness campaign is a reminder that there are increased dangers associated with holiday driving. Efforts are focused to reduce crashes and fatalities on Delaware roadways during the holiday season.  In addition to the education component of the campaign, the annual Safe Family Holiday will have an ongoing enforcement period, which focuses on impaired driving, speed, pedestrian safety, occupant protection, and distracted driving during one of the busiest travel times of the year.

“Celebrations, inclement weather and undue stress that come along with the holiday season often make for a dangerous combination for drivers and pedestrians,” said Kimberly Chesser, OHS’ acting director. “In fact, in the past five years, there were 316 pedestrian crashes across the state in November – December alone. This is a busy time of year, but that doesn’t mean it has to be hazardous for travelers, which is why our office is once again bringing back ‘The Safe Family Holiday Campaign’ and reminding motorists of the increased dangers associated with holiday travel on Delaware roadways. We want everyone to enjoy the holiday season, but to also be responsible and get where they are going safely.”

The campaign will once again use a life-size snow globe and carolers—ubiquitous holiday favorites, but with a unique safety-messaging twist*— to rally Delawareans to be more responsible drivers, passengers, and pedestrians, and empower them to take steps to reduce holiday crashes and fatalities.

The snow globe and carolers will be featured at the following prominent community events and locations throughout the state, and will be joined by street teams that will encourage passersby to sign a holiday drive responsibility pledge and enter the larger-than-life inflated snow globes, where they’ll have a picture taken to commemorate their commitment to safe driving and walking:

  • Saturday, Dec. 1, from noon to 5 P.M.: A Farmer’s Christmas at the Delaware Agricultural Museum in Dover, Delaware
  • Saturday, Dec. 8, from 4 P.M. to 8 P.M.: Winter WonderFEST2018 at Cape Henlopen State Park in Lewes, Delaware
  • Saturday, Dec. 15, from 10 A.M. to 2 P.M.: Dover Mall in Dover, Delaware
  • Saturday, Dec. 22, from 10 A.M. to 2 P.M.: Christiana Mall in Newark, Delaware

    police officer working DUI checkpoint in Dover Delaware
    Police Officer working a Dover, Delaware DUI Checkpoint

“The response to last year’s campaign was overwhelmingly positive, generating more than 1,000 pledges,” said Chesser. “We hope to have the same results if not more for this holiday season.”

In addition to these grassroots efforts, OHS will have three DUI checkpoints in place on Wednesday, Nov. 21, ahead of Thanksgiving weekend. Checkpoints will be conducted from 10 P.M. – 2 A.M. at the following locations:

  • Kirkwood Highway in Wilmington, Delaware
  • South State Street in Dover, Delaware
  • US Route 113 in Lincoln, Delaware

“Thanksgiving Eve is one of the most dangerous nights of the year with a high number of impaired crashes,” adds Chesser. “This is why we are taking precautions to ensure the safety of our Delawareans. Plan ahead and have a designated driver or take advantage of one of the many ridesharing programs available.”

Statistics

Recent statistics emphasize why OHS is focusing on four core areas of travel safety during The Most Dangerous Time of the Year campaign.

  • DUIs: So far in 2018, the state of Delaware has seen 3,470 arrests and 18 fatalities related to impaired driving.
  • Speeding: Last year (2017) Delaware had 27 fatalities related to speed.
  • Pedestrians: Over the past 5 years, 147 pedestrians have been killed in traffic crashes; in 2017, crashes caused the death of 33 pedestrians in Delaware.
  • Distracted driving and failure to use seatbelts: Last year (2017) inattentive driving caused the majority of personal injury and property damage crashes in Delaware and 52% of fatalities were unbuckled. And from 2013-2017, Delaware had 150 unrestrained crashes in November – December.

For more information, please visit ohs.delaware.gov, or visit us on Facebook (@highwaysafetyde), Twitter (@highwaysafetyDE) and Instagram (highwaysafetyde).

*Snowglobe depicted in posters, print ads, billboards, theater ads, retail floor displays, social media posts, website pages and more will display the usual festive holiday settings, but with a vehicle accident disrupting the “peace and joy” of the season. With an overriding message of “Don’t let a crash shake things up this holiday season,” specific messages will address everything from avoiding DUIs and putting the phone away while driving, to slowing down, buckling up and crossing at crosswalks.

*Carolers will be equipped with lyrics to traditional holiday favorites, reinforcing The Most Dangerous Time of the Year messaging. These carols will be heard live as they travel with the inflatable snow globes, as well as on the radio during the campaign period. 

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About the Delaware Office of Highway Safety
The Office of Highway Safety (OHS) is committed to improving the safety of Delaware’s motoring public by focusing on behavioral traffic safety issues such as impaired driving, seat belt use, speeding, child passenger safety, pedestrian and bicycle safety, motorcycle safety, and teen driving issues. FAQs can be found at ArriveAliveDE.com.


Checkpoint Strikeforce and Border to Border DUI Enforcement Will be Conducted March 16 and 17

Delaware OHS will partner with Delaware and Maryland law enforcement agencies for maximum DUI enforcement over the St. Patrick’s Day weekend.

Dover, DE. March 9, 2018 – If you drink and drive during St. Patrick’s Day weekend, you’ll be pushing your luck. There is a high likelihood you’ll be pulled over.

Police will be out in full force in Delaware and Maryland as part of the “Border to Border” multi-jurisdictional deployment. Delaware State Police along with the Delmar, Laurel, Seaford, Bridgeville and Greenwood Police Departments will be partnering with Maryland and Virginia law enforcement agencies to patrol the entire length of U.S. 13 from Virginia to north of the Delaware line. This year’s Border to Border, which has been run by Maryland law enforcement since 2012, will be conducted on Friday, March 16, 2018 from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. Delaware’s DUI checkpoint enforcement period will be on March 17 from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m., as follows:

  1. New Castle County on Rt. 7 in Wilmington
  2. New Castle County on Rt. 40 in Bear
  3. Kent County Rt. 13 near Camden
  4. Sussex County SR 1 n/b and s/b, in Rehoboth Beach
  5. Sussex County on Concord Rd. in Seaford

There will be at least one Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) at each checkpoint.

On St. Patrick’s Day, we continually see a spike in impaired driving crashes from year to year. Nationally, from 2012-2016, 269 lives were lost in impaired driving crashes during the St. Patrick’s Day holiday. In Delaware, from 2012 to 2016, there have been 62 arrests and 31 crashes resulting in 27 injuries during the holiday period.

A DUI arrest can set you back an average of $10,000 in attorney fees, fines, court costs, lost time at work, higher insurance rates, car towing and repairs, and more. It could also result in the loss of your license and possibly even your job.

“As you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day we want everyone to think of your family, friends and other drivers traveling on our roads in Delaware. Drink responsibly and discourage others from drunk or buzzed driving. If you feel buzzed, you should not drive. Please have a plan before you go out and pick a designated driver who is responsible and will not drink. The Delaware State Police and local law enforcement agencies up and down the state have partnered together to enhance motorists safety with extra patrols and DUI enforcement at checkpoints in all three counties. Think about the safety of others as more families are traveling on Delaware roads.”

  • Sergeant Richard Bratz, Delaware State Police, Public Information Director

 “Don’t push your luck this St. Patrick’s Day. If you are driving, don’t drink and if you are drinking don’t drive. A little planning can go a long way towards providing safety for everyone. Whether it’s booking a hotel room, arranging for a designated driver, or using a taxi or rideshare service, we hope all who celebrate do so safely.”

  • Ken Grant, Manager of Public & Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic.

 “This Border to Border effort is an outstanding example of our local communities and neighboring states joining forces to save lives on our roadways. We want everyone to make a plan for a safe and sober ride before celebrating this St. Patrick’s Day.”

  • Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) Deputy Secretary Jim Ports

OHS urges motorists to plan ahead. Don’t let a DUI ruin your life. Find a designated driver, call a cab or use a ridesharing service like Lyft or Uber. You can also text saferide to 90000 for a link to a list of Delaware taxi companies as well as download links for the Lyft and Uber apps.

For more information, please visit ohs.delaware.gov and www.arrivealivede.com/Drive-Sober

March 2018 St Pats CPSF and Border to Border release


Checkpoint Strikeforce Week 8 Results

Dover –  A total of 116 people were arrested statewide last week for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) of alcohol and/or drugs. Of those 116 individuals, six were arrested at DUI checkpoints conducted by the New Castle County DUI Task Force. Officers also made five drug arrests, apprehended one wanted individual, and seized one weapon. Statewide, there have been 2,630 DUI arrests made in Delaware this year.

DUI checkpoints continue and are scheduled for:

Friday August 28 – Wilmington- (NCCTF)

Saturday August 29- Seaford- (DSP Troop 5)

Checkpoint Strikeforce is a regional sobriety checkpoint campaign aimed at arresting DUI offenders by using high visibility enforcement to deter those who would otherwise choose to drink and drive.  The campaign is a six month long effort coordinated locally by the Delaware Office of Highway Safety and involves setting up weekly DUI checkpoints & patrols statewide.  Delaware had 4,086 DUI arrests statewide for 2014.

For a list of DUI checkpoints in your area text CHECKPOINT to 99000 or for a list of cabs text TAXI to 99000.  More information and resources on Checkpoint Strikeforce can be found at www.ohs.delaware.gov, www.ArrriveAliveDE.com. Follow regular campaign updates on Twitter at www.twitter.com/DEHighwaySafe, Facebook www.facebook.com/ArriveAliveDE, and subscribe to YouTube channel DelawareOHS.


Checkpoint Strikeforce Week 5 Results

Dover –  A total of 83 people were arrested statewide last week for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) of alcohol and/or drugs. Of those 83 individuals, eleven (11) were arrested at DUI checkpoints conducted by the New Castle County DUI Task Force. Police officers also made 5 drug arrests, apprehended 3 wanted persons, and made 37 other traffic arrests.  Statewide, there have been 2,333 DUI arrests made in Delaware this year.

DUI checkpoints continue and are scheduled for:

Saturday August 8 – Stanton – (New Castle County DUI Taskforce)

Checkpoint Strikeforce is a regional sobriety checkpoint campaign aimed at arresting DUI offenders by using high visibility enforcement to deter those who would otherwise choose to drink and drive.  The campaign is a six month long effort coordinated locally by the Delaware Office of Highway Safety and involves setting up weekly DUI checkpoints & patrols statewide.  Delaware had 4,086 DUI arrests statewide for 2014.

For a list of DUI checkpoints in your area text CHECKPOINT to 99000 or for a list of cabs text TAXI to 99000.  More information and resources on Checkpoint Strikeforce can be found at www.ohs.delaware.gov, www.ArrriveAliveDE.com. Follow regular campaign updates on Twitter at www.twitter.com/DEHighwaySafe, Facebook www.facebook.com/ArriveAliveDE, and subscribe to YouTube channel DelawareOHS.