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June 29, 2017

Derby Barracks/Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over

 

This July Fourth, Vermont State Police
Wants You to Remember: Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over

 

This year, as we celebrate our country’s birthday, thousands of families will take to their cars, driving to neighborhood cookouts, family picnics, and other summer festivities. Sadly, some of those families’ Independence Day will end in tragedy, as too many irresponsible people will decide to drink and drive. Unfortunately, their bad choices will have lasting effects on families. 

 

During the Fourth of July holiday period, which starts at 6 p.m. Friday, June 30, and ends on Wednesday, July 5 at 5:59 a.m., police will be out in full force reminding drivers to Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over. Law enforcement will travel the region, looking to put a stop to drunk driving. Expect to see increased sobriety checkpoints, roving and saturation patrols, and other enforcement efforts. These enforcement campaigns are vital to public safety, and save lives. Statistics show us that drunk driving is a deadly epidemic in our nation. In fact, in 2015, 10,265 people were killed in drunk-driving crashes—almost a third of all traffic fatalities nationwide. As you head out to enjoy the long weekend, keep the following in mind:

 

·         It is illegal to drive with a BAC of .08 or higher in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Yet, over the 2015 Fourth of July holiday period (6 p.m. July 2 to 5:59 a.m. July 6), 146 people were killed in crashes involving at least one driver or motorcycle operator with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher, and 92 people died in crashes involving at least one driver or motorcycle operator with a BAC of .15 or higher – almost twice the legal limit.

·         During the 2015 Fourth of July holiday period, 46 percent of the young drivers (18 to 34 years old) killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes were alcohol-impaired (BAC of .08 or higher).

·         The rate of alcohol impairment among drivers involved in fatal crashes during the 2015 July Fourth holiday period was over three times higher at night than it was during the day.

·         This year, law enforcement in Orleans and Essex Counties is taking part in the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign over the Fourth of July holiday to end drunk driving. This means increased enforcement with zero tolerance for those who drive impaired.

·         The number of drunk-driving fatalities during the 2015 July Fourth holiday period is no exception to this trend. From 2011 to 2015, there were 751 people killed in drunk-driving crashes over the Fourth of July holiday periods.

·         From 2014 to 2015, the number of overall drunk-driving-crash fatalities increased by 3 percent in the United States—from 9,943 people killed in 2014 to 10,265 in 2015.

·         Below is the breakdown for Vermont specific traffic related fatalities to date

 

--2017 Fatalities: 23 Total – 16 vehicle operators, 6 passengers, 1 pedestrian

 

--2017 Fatal Crash data known to-date (June 26, 2017):

2 double fatality crashes.

0 triple fatality crashes.

2 operators suspected as driving under the influence of alcohol only.

4 operators suspected as driving under the influence of drugs only.

4 operators suspected as driving under the influence of both alcohol & drugs

5 Active Cannabis – Delta 9 THC confirmed

10 operators suspected to be speeding.

6 operator(s) under suspended license.

0 person operating without a license.

2 Motorcyclist Fatalities

7 “Older Drivers” involved (Older Driver is defined as any person age 65 or older. & “involved” does not imply “fault”)

0 Junior License operators involved in fatal crashes.

1 Crashes involving a Commercial Motor Vehicle (“involving” does not imply “fault”)

 

·         --Total 23 Fatalities:

1 Pedestrian

0 Bicyclists  

11 Belted

7 Unbelted

2 Wearing Helmet/DOT Approved Helmet (Motor-Driven Cycles & ATV)

0 Not wearing Helmet/DOT Approved Helmet (Motor-Driven Cycles)

0 Improperly Restrained/Incorrect use of Belt or Child Safety Seat

2 Unknown Restraint Use

39% Of all fatalities: involving vehicles with seatbelts available were

Unbelted. This percentage does not consider the 1 unknown

restraint cases. (Sum of “Belted” & “Unbelted”, divided into “Unbelted”)

 

***The above-mentioned data is preliminary as final investigation reports and toxicology are still pending in many cases.  There have been (2) more fatalities added in past 24 hours for a revised total of 25 deaths.

 

·         If you wish to see additional statewide crash information, please go to the Vermont Highway Safety Alliance web page at: http://vermonthighwaysafety.org. The opening page counts are updated as soon as we are notified of a fatal crash. If you wish further detailed queries, just let me know.

 

Know You’re Going to Party? Make a Plan.

No matter the occasion, drinking and driving have deadly consequences—and it can cost you your freedom. A DUI arrest costs, on average, $10,000, but the punishment doesn’t end with the financial burden. Arrested drunk drivers face jail time, the loss of their driver licenses, higher insurance rates, and dozens of other hefty expenses, from car towing and repairs to attorney fees, fines, court costs, lost time at work, and more.

 

So, what’s the best bet for a safe ride home? Before the fun even starts, plan your safe ride home with our helpful tips.

 

·         Remember that it is never okay to drink and drive. Even if you’ve had one alcoholic beverage, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation to get home safely.

·         Download NHTSA’s SaferRide mobile app available on Google Play for Android devices: (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.nhtsa.SaferRide&hl=en), and Apple’s ITunes Store for IOS devices: (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/saferride/id950774008?mt=8). SaferRide allows users to call a taxi or a predetermined friend, and identifies the user’s location so he or she can be picked up.

·         If you see a drunk driver on the road, contact the Vermont State Police.

·         Know a friend who is about to drink and drive? Take the keys away and make arrangements to get your friend home safely.

 

Remember, with all of today’s options for getting home safely, there’s no excuse for getting behind the wheel after drinking alcohol. Driving impaired is never worth the risk, not to yourself or anyone else. If law enforcement pulls you over for drunk driving this Fourth of July, you can count on being arrested.

 

For more information about the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign, visit www.trafficsafetymarketing.gov.

 

 

_____________________

Sergeant Andrew Jensen

Patrol Commander

Vermont State Police

Troop A – Derby Barracks

(802) 334-8881