LEXINGTON, KY (LEX 18) – If you choose to drive impaired in Lexington – beware. Lexington police are joining with law enforcement throughout the nation for the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign, Aug. 17-Sept. 3.
The strong nationwide impaired driving crackdown will include high-visibility enforcement, high-profile events, and will be supported by national paid advertising, creating a comprehensive campaign to curb impaired driving.
“We aggressively watch for drunk drivers year-round,” Sergeant Randall Combs said. “But by joining this effort, we will make Lexington’s roadways safer for everyone during the heavily-traveled Labor Day holiday.”
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), on average, there is one alcohol impaired driving-related fatality every 50 minutes across America. Also according to NHTSA, high-visibility enforcement such as the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign reduces alcohol-impaired driving fatalities by as much as 20 percent.
There were more than 3,900 total collisions involving alcohol in Kentucky last year, resulting in more than 1,800 injuries and 121 fatalities. During the Labor Day holiday weekend, there were 57 collisions involving alcohol, resulting in 22 injuries and three fatalities.
“We hope the campaign will serve as a reminder that those who choose to drink should never get behind the wheel,” Sgt. Combs said. “But if someone does choose to drive while impaired, we will arrest them. No warnings. No excuses.”
Last year, Senate Bill 133 passed the legislature and will require repeat DUI offenders to blow into an ignition interlock device, which is installed on the vehicle. The vehicle will not start if the person’s blood-alcohol concentration exceeds a 0.02 level.
First-time DUI offenders are not required to have the device installed unless there is an aggravating circumstance, such as speeding or driving drunk with a child in the car.
“Driving impaired is simply not worth the risk. So don’t take the chance,” Sgt. Combs said. “Remember, we will be out in force, so ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.’”