07-01-08 Holiday DUI Patrols
Boise, July 1, 2008 - Boise Police will work overtime through the Fourth of July Holiday keeping city roads safe.
The Boise Police Night STEP Unit, officers who specialize in DUI enforcement, received a $7000 grant from the Idaho Transportation Department Office of Highway Safety. The state grant will pay for overtime for more officers to patrol Boise City streets looking specifically for DUI drivers July 2 - 7.
The reason Boise Police will join law enforcement around Idaho and throughout the country in focusing on DUI patrols over the Fourth of July holiday weekend goes directly to public safety:
- Nationwide, in 2006, 27 percent of all drivers involved in traffic related crashes during the Fourth of July holiday period possessed a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher, which is the illegal limit in all states (6:00PM FRIDAY, JUNE 30, 2006 TO 5:59 AM WEDNESDAY, JULY 5, 2006).*
- During the July 4th holiday period, 2006, nationwide 37% of traffic fatalities involved a driver or motorcyclist with a BAC of .08 or higher.*
"July Fourth is a time families and friends like to get together and celebrate. We want those celebrations to be safe," said Sgt. Lori Sperry of the Boise PD Night STEP Unit.
"If alcohol is going to be a part of Fourth of July celebrations, we're urging people to take steps to keep themselves and others safe by not driving if they've been drinking. For those who choose to drink and drive, officers will be out in force looking for them." said Sgt. Sperry.
In recent years, Boise Police have arrested between 30 and 40 people for DUI over the Fourth of July holidays.
Boise Police urge drivers to take the precautions listed in the news release pasted below, issued recently from the Idaho Department of Transportation.
*Stats are from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration and are the most recent available.
ITD Release:DUI emphasis patrols planned for July 2-7
BOISE - The Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) reminds drivers that law enforcement agencies throughout Idaho will participate in targeted patrols to arrest impaired drivers July 2-7.
About 32 state, county and local law enforcement agencies will participate in the Fourth of July holiday emphasis patrols that are funded through a federal grant administered by ITD.
"Water recreation and vehicle patrols will be intensified around popular boating destinations in addition to other locations throughout the state," said Kevin Bechen, with ITD's Office of Highway Operations and Safety. "Boating under the influence is just as illegal and dangerous as driving a motor vehicle under the influence."
Law enforcement officers also will watch for aggressive drivers.
"Aggressive driving is often associated with excessive alcohol use," Bechen said.
Driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or higher is illegal in Idaho - .02 for persons younger than 21. Driving skills start to deteriorate around .05 BAC.
Law enforcement officers will confiscate a driver's license on the spot when arresting someone for driving under the influence of intoxicants (DUI). For a first offense, the license is lost for 90 days following failed evidentiary testing, or one year if the test is refused - in addition to other penalties that will be imposed for a DUI offense.
A few simple precautions before celebrating can prevent a drunk driving tragedy.
- Whenever you plan on consuming alcohol, designate a sober driver before going out and give that person your keys.
- If you're impaired, call a taxi, a sober friend or family member to get you home safely.
- Use available Sober Rides programs.
- Promptly report drunk drivers you see on roadways to law enforcement.
- If you know someone who is about to drive impaired, take his or her keys and help make other transportation arrangements.
"Your best and only defense against drunk drivers is to always wear a seat belt," Bechen said.
ITD Office of Highway Operations and Safety
HQ Public Affairs