APD cracks down on DUIs this New Year's - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

APD cracks down on DUIs this New Year's

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December 27, 2007

Albany -- Flashing blue lights: this is not a site you want to see in your rear view mirror when you kick off 2008, especially if you're driving drunk

"We're going to place you under arrest, take you jail, and more than likely, your car is going to be towed," said Albany Police Corporal William Dowdell.

The Albany Police, along with other local and state law enforcement agencies will be vigorously patrolling the streets and highways looking for impaired drivers.

"They start partying early, and they're usually moving from one party to the next and they get caught in between. Some of them end up getting caught on their way home or they get caught in crashes," said Dowdell, an 11-year veteran of the APD.

He said, "I've had the unfortunate experience of actually working several fatal crashes; two or three of which were actually involving drunk drivers. In one particular crash, it wasn't around the holiday period, but a mother and her unborn child both lost their lives."

But during New Year's holiday the number of DUI related fatalities go up. From 2001 to 2005, the NHTSA reported that DUI drivers accounted for 41% of fatal crashes during the New Year's travel period. That number is 3% higher than the totals for Christmas and 10% higher than the rest of the year.

And if that's reason enough to designate a driver, Dowdell says, "You start hitting the financial situation, and loss of license, and possible loss of job and income."

And you can be sure that the police will be out there looking for you this New Years if you make the decision to drink and drive.

The Albany Police reports that they will extra officers on the street through the New Year holiday travel period. They said the increased patrols have been successful this year with declines in the number of crashes and traffic related fatalities.

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