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Drive Sober Campaign Begins Aug. 16

August 15, 2017, 1:30 PM HST
* Updated August 15, 1:34 PM
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DUI Checkpoints to Increase During Holiday Season. File Photo

Families and friends will soon be celebrating the end of the summer with barbeques, pool parties and get-togethers. This time of the year has also become the deadliest with drunk drivers endangering themselves and others on America’s roadways.

To stop drunk drivers and help save lives, the Hawai‘i Department of Transportation and the National Traffic Safety Administration will launch Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over, a national campaign that will run from Aug. 16 through Sept. 4, 2017.

Drivers should expect to see more patrol vehicles and sobriety checkpoints during this high-visibility campaign. It’s essential to not drink and drive and to plan a sober ride home before you leave for a party. During the Labor Day holiday, officers will make zero exceptions for drunk driving.

In 2015 there were 460 crash fatalities nationwide during the Labor Day holiday period. Almost half (40 %) of those fatal crashes involved drivers who had been drinking with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .01 grams per deciliter or higher.

Of those alcohol-related fatal crashes, one-third (33%) involved drivers who were drunk (.08+ BAC), and nearly one-fourth (23%) involved drivers who were driving with a BAC almost twice the illegal limit (.15+).

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Evenings are the most dangerous time to on the road. During the 2015 Labor Day holiday period, 78% of drunk-driving crash fatalities occurred between 6 p.m. and 5:59 a.m. as compared to half of all drunk-driving crash fatalities throughout the rest of the year.

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The Hawai‘i Department of Transportation advises anyone who is planning on drinking to:

Always have a plan for a safe way home before the celebrations begin.

Do not forget to designate a sober driver or use public transportation to get home safely.

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Download NHTSA’s SaferRide mobile app available on Google Play for Android devices and Apple’s ITunes Store for IOS devices. 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.

In addition, if you know someone who is about to drive or ride after drinking, take the keys and help them get safely to their destination by making the necessary arrangements. Arrested drunk drivers face jail time, the loss of their driver licenses, higher insurance rates, car towing and repair costs, attorney fees, fines, court costs, lost time at work and more.

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