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Weekend nets 50 DUI arrests

LAWRENCEVILLE -- In spite of headline-hogging drunken driving arrests in metro Atlanta last week, tipsy revelers apparently got behind the wheel en masse over the long holiday weekend.

Records show roughly 50 intoxicated motorists were busted by police across Gwinnett County between Friday evening and Monday morning. That tally includes arrests on allegations of drunken driving and driving under the influence of various drugs.

Gwinnett police, the county's largest patrol force and operators of the DUI Task Force, reported no specific crackdown or checkpoints.

Instead, officers operated with "a heightened sense of awareness" that comes with holiday revelry, said department spokesman Cpl. Brian Kelly.

"Holiday periods are inherently more dangerous due to sheer numbers, traffic volume and the increased frequency in which people find themselves traveling to and from social settings and imbibing in alcoholic drinks," Kelly said.

Gwinnett authorities reported no major accidents on the county's highways and city streets over the long holiday weekend.

"I would say our traffic enforcement was enhanced," said Kelly, "with many officers from different units of the department focused on holiday traffic enforcement, and motorist (and) pedestrian safety."