Remember Drinking & Driving Should Never Mix Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over

02ct Accident Sept. 25-2013 Old State Rd-Ches. Ave ExtendedPIKESVILLE — The Maryland State Police are warning drivers they can expect enforcement of speed, occupant restraint and most importantly DUI laws this holiday season.

The State Police Impaired Driving Reduction Effort and troopers statewide will be out in force focusing efforts on impaired, distracted, and aggressive drivers. This effort is intended to reduce traffic crashes and the resulting injuries and deaths on Maryland roads. The Maryland State Police remind drivers all year, but especially during the holiday season, that drinking alcohol and driving should never mix.

“There is no excuse for impaired driving, so we will accept no excuse,” Maryland State Police Superintendent Colonel William M. Pallozzi said.  “State troopers and law enforcement officers throughout Maryland are focused on identifying and arresting impaired drivers, whose numbers always increase during the holiday season.  We are dedicating our efforts this year to the memory of Montgomery County Police Officer Noah Leotta, who was struck less than three weeks ago by an alleged impaired driver and died at the age of 24.”

On average, one-third (31 percent) of all fatal crashes in America involve drunk driving. In the month of December 2014, there were 82 people killed in crashes, involving at least one driver or motorcycle operator with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher. Two of those deaths occurred on Christmas Day. So far this year, Maryland State Police have made more than 6,700 DUI arrests.

As Maryland state troopers support the state highway safety plan “Toward Zero Deaths,” motorists need to be aware of the dangers of alcohol. Alcohol takes effect quickly and wears off slowly. It tends to reduce one’s control, judgment, and coordination. In addition, perceptual abilities, speech and speed of reflexes can be impaired.

Impaired drivers can face jail time, lose their driver’s licenses, incur higher insurance rates, and dozens of other expenses ranging from attorney fees, court costs, car towing repairs, to lost wags due to time off from work. Even worse, a drunk driver can claim someone’s life, or even their own.

Earlier this year in 2015, Maryland State Police received a national award from the International Association of Chiefs of Police for traffic safety initiatives. The Maryland State Police were recognized for their commitment and continuous efforts to keep Maryland’s roads safe.

Please follow these tips to keep Maryland roads safe this holiday season:

  • Have a plan before you drink any alcoholic beverages. One drink can impair your judgment and increase the risk of getting arrested for driving drunk.
  • Designate a driver.
  • Be attentive while traveling this holiday.
  • Ensure everyone is secured by a seatbelt.
  • Call 911 to report drunk drivers.
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