Don’t Pay, Enjoy the Labor Day Holiday:
Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over
With Americans celebrating the warm Labor Day holiday weekend with extra enthusiasm this year, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) wants to remind everyone about the dangers of impaired driving. This Labor Day weekend, NHTSA will join with the Grand Isle County Sheriff’s Department to spread the word about impaired driving dangers and to work together to get impaired drivers off the roads and help save lives. The high-visibility national enforcement campaign, Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over, runs from August 19 through September 7, 2020. During this period, local law enforcement will show zero tolerance for impaired driving. Increased state and national messages about the dangers of impaired driving, coupled with law enforcement and increased officers on the road, aim to drastically reduce impaired driving on our nation’s roadways.
Sadly, the statistics prove that we have a lot of work to do to put an end to impaired driving. According to NHTSA, 10,511 people were killed in impaired-driving crashes in 2018. On average, 10,000 people were killed each year from 2014 to 2018 — one person was killed in impaired-driving crashes every 50 minutes in 2018. That is the equivalent of 20 jumbo jets crashing each year, with no survivors.
During the 2018 Labor Day holiday period (6 p.m. August 31 – 5:59 a.m. September 4), there were 439 crash fatalities nationwide. Forty-three percent of those fatalities involved drivers who had been drinking (.01+ BAC). More than one-third (38%) of the fatalities involved drivers who were impaired (.08+ BAC), and nearly one-fourth (24%) involved drivers who were driving with a BAC almost twice the legal limit (.15+ BAC). Age is a particularly risky factor: Among drivers between the ages of 18 and 34 who were killed in crashes over the Labor Day holiday period in 2018, 47% of those drivers were impaired, with BACs of .08 or higher.
The Grand Isle County Sheriff’s Department recommends these safe alternatives to drinking and driving:
- Remember that it is never okay to drink and drive. Even if you have had only one alcoholic beverage, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation or a ride service to get home safely.
- If you see an impaired driver on the road, call 911.
- Do you have a friend who is about to drink and drive? Take the keys away and ensure your friend gets home safely.
As of 08/03/2020, 35 people have died on Vermont highways compared to 14 deaths at this time last year (26 operators, 7 passengers and 2 pedestrians). Driver impairment, speed, failure to use safety restraints and distracted driving continue to be the leading causes for these tragedies.
High visibility enforcement has been the key to success in Grand Isle County evident in minimal law enforcement response to serious injury crashes or fatalities. Please continue to help us prevent senseless tragedies! Grand Isle County Sheriff’s Department – Keeping You Safe!!!!!