New York State Police and local law enforcement agencies have started increasing patrols to crack down on drunk and drugged driving and other traffic infractions during the 4th of July holiday.
The enhancement enforcement started Saturday, June 29 and runs through Friday, July 5.
Police will conduct sobriety checkpoints and target reckless and aggressive driving statewide in an effort to keep New York highways safe during one of the busiest summer holidays for travel.
Troopers will be using both marked State Police vehicles and Concealed Identity Traffic Enforcement (CITE) vehicles as part of the operation. The CITE vehicles allow troopers to more easily identify motorists who are using handheld devices while driving. These vehicles blend in with every day traffic but are unmistakable as emergency vehicles once the emergency lighting is activated.
"Troopers will be out in force this holiday weekend and will be on the lookout for impaired, distracted and reckless motorists who put others in danger," New York State Police Superintendent Keith M. Corlett said, "Our message is simple. Don't drink and Drive! Help prevent senseless tragedies caused by impaired driving. Stay safe, and don't make a fatal decision that costs your life or someone else's."
Last year, state police issued nearly 10,500 vehicle and traffic tickets during the 4th of July weekend. Troopers arrested 216 people for DWI and investigated 165 crashes, which resulted in four fatalities and 244 injuries.
During the enforcement period, drivers can expect a number of sobriety checkpoints and DWI patrols. Law enforcement will also be looking for motorists who are using their phones and other electronic devices while behind the wheel. Drivers should also remember to "move over" for stopped emergency and hazard vehicles stopped on the side of the road when they travel New York roadways.
The New York State Police, GTSC and NHTSA recommend these simple tips to prevent drunk driving:
- Plan a safe way home before the fun begins;
- Before drinking, designate a sober driver;
- If you're impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation;
- Use your community's sober ride program;
- If you suspect a driver is drunk or impaired on the road, don't hesitate to contact local law enforcement;
- If you know someone who is about to drive or ride while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely.
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