National DWI Enforcement Campaign Begins August 18
The St Francis County Sheriff's Department along with Arkansas State Police and other area agencies will be taking part in a National DWI Enforcement Campaign beginning on Saturday August 18 and will last through the Labor Day Holiday on September 3rd.
"We are committed to the safety of the citizens in St Francis County, and when it comes to impaired driving from alcohol or drugs we have a zero-tolerance policy," commented Captain Eddie Adamson. "We are going to have extra officers out during this time and hopefully we will be able to detect any impaired drivers to get them off the roads but we would rather they not be on the roads in the first place"
According to statistics from MADD twenty nine drivers are killed each day as a result of drunk driving accidents which equals about one every 50 minutes.
"In addition to impaired drivers from alcohol we are also going to be focused on drivers who are impaired from any type of legal or illegal drug as well," Adamson added. "Statistically we know that more than 22% of drivers have tested positive for illegal, prescription, or over-the-counter drugs in blood and/or oral fluid tests so it is a growing problem"
According to Sheriff Bobby May prevention is clearly the best way to address the dangers of impaired driving, "If a person is going to be drinking it is certainly smart to have a plan for someone else to be driving and that will prevent any dangers from drinking and driving. However, we also know some people use illegal drugs or abuse legal drugs and that can lead to impairment as well. No matter what causes the impairment a person should not be behind the wheel of a car or endanger anyone because of their impairment."
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends the following steps to prevent drunken driving:
• "If you will be drinking, plan on not driving. Plan your safe ride home before you start the party" and designate a sober driver ahead of time.
• Call a taxi, phone a sober friend or family member or use public transportation. "Download NHTSA's SaferRide mobile app which helps you identify your location and call a taxi or friend to pick you up."
• "If someone you know has been drinking, do not let that person get behind the wheel." Take their keys and help them arrange a sober ride home.
• "If you see an impaired driver on the road, contact local law enforcement. Your actions could help save someone's life."