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Holiday DUI campaign begins

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Indepedence Day is still a week and a half away, but the state's annual holiday push to rid the roads of drunk drivers has already begun.

The Governor's Office of Highway Safety began its Operation Zero Tolerance campaign Friday and will continue it through July 7. The extended campaign comes because during the past two years the state has averaged 88 alcohol-involved crashes between July 3 and July 5, a press release said.

Plus, in a state where alcohol-involved crashes account for 23 percent of traffic fatalities, 2013 has become an especially dangerous. Crash data shows the state had 520 traffic fatalaties as of June 20, above the mark of 499 the state reached as of the same date last year.

"While a 4 percent increase may not seem like a lot to some people, that's an additional 21 people who won't be able to celebrate our nation's independence this year," GOHS Director Harris Blackwood said in the press release. "We're launching Operation Zero Tolerance to not only rid the roads of drunk drivers, but to try and keep our traffic fatalities as low as possible. We join our partners in all 50 states to warn people to drive sober or get pulled over."

The state's enforcement will also be concentrated this summer on Georgia's waterways, since a new boating-under-the-influence law went into effect this spring.

"Here in Georgia, drunk driving won't be tolerated on the road or on the lake," Blackwood said. "Getting drunk boaters off the water helps keep drunk drivers off the road. Nobody should celebrate our nation's independence with a night in jail because they didn't find a sober driver."


budda 9 months, 4 weeks ago

"Here in Georgia, drunk driving won't be tolerated on the road or on the lake," Blackwood said.

Good to know. It's to bad the courts drop the DUI's to Reckless Driving EVERY TIME!


dentaldawg83 9 months, 4 weeks ago

so what's being done about the 77% of traffice deaths that have nothing to do with alcohol?


Say_that_again 9 months, 4 weeks ago

Assuming your stat is correct (which I doubt but did not check) this only proves the effectiveness of increased drunk driving enforcement. I remember a time when 80% of traffic accidents involved someone that had been drinking. Those resulting in death even higher. I would say that continued enforcement is the way to go. Maybe this enforcement can save even more lives.

PS: DUI enforcement doesn't mean they will ignore speeders, tailgaters, lane weavers or those that cut in too close when entering the expressways.


dentaldawg83 9 months, 3 weeks ago

I never remember an 80% number, maybe 50% . Truth is the police and politicians focus on the DUI number because it's a money-maker. Most DUI deaths occur later or late in the evening when most of us are at home, but these "DUI" checks are done earlier to avail the authorities to the decent, mostly law-abiding citizens wallets. As an example my wife and I dined at a downtown Duluth restaUrant recently, consuming a beer with the meal. When we left we were being stared down by one of Duluth's finest who was parked facing the several restaurants there. It was very intimidating to the point my wife later said we were not going back to downtown Duluth to eat again. This police person was not too interested in solving the nonalcohol related traffic death issue.


Mack711 9 months, 3 weeks ago

You just made the best case for not going to downtown Duluth. No matter what they do this will be the main reason for not going. Like you we have stopped going into Duluth and avoiding this city all together.


Say_that_again 9 months, 3 weeks ago

I am 70, guess you haven't been around as long. Since most drunk drivers got that way at establishments that serve alcohol, the best enforcement is to get them as they leave the location, before they cause an accident. I applaud Duluth police for aggressively trying to stop DUI at the source. It is much easier to identify intoxicated behavior while walking to a car than after they start driving, this is much better than stopping everyone at a check point, something common in the 60's and 70's.


dentaldawg83 9 months, 3 weeks ago

still haven't shown what is done about the 77% of traffic deaths occurring while the police is putting forth their efforts trying to prevent the 23% (stat obtained by actually reading the article).


MissDaisyCook 9 months, 4 weeks ago

Hey Say, Your figures are way, way off. The vast majority of vehicle crashes are caused by other than drunk drivers. Most other crashes are caused by drivers not paying full attention to driving; doing things like texting, talking on phones, checking email, looking at maps, reading newspapers or books, applying makeup, eating, fiddling with the sound system, talking with passengers, holding a pet, etc. If you are doing anything besides driving you are less safe. Even a hands free cell phone takes your full attention away from driving; you are concentrating on the conversation, not your driving. Just that split second of distraction can be serious. As you may have noticed, a great deal of attention of the media is not focused on distracted drivers.


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