Louisville area law enforcement, business join national crackdown to reduce impaired driving fatalities
The “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” enforcement campaign runs through the Labor Day holiday weekend
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (August 13, 2013) – If you drink and drive in Jefferson County and surrounding counties beware, the Louisville Metro Police Department, Kentucky State Police and other local law enforcement agencies are joining with the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety and officers across the nation for the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign Aug. 16 to Sept. 2, 2012. To kick-off the campaign, a press event was held today at Fourth Street Live! in downtown Louisville.
The strong nationwide impaired driving crackdown will include high-visibility enforcement, high-profile events, and will be supported by national paid advertising, creating a comprehensive campaign to curb alcohol impaired driving in August and through the Labor Day holiday weekend.
Bill Bell, Executive Director for the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety said officers, troopers, and deputies will be aggressively looking for impaired drivers during the crackdown and will arrest anyone caught driving impaired.
“Research has shown that high-visibility enforcement like the ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ campaign reduces alcohol-impaired driving fatalities by as much as 20 percent,” said Bell. “By joining this nationwide effort, we will make our roadways safer for everyone throughout the Labor Day period.”
Last year, Kentucky recorded over 5,750 alcohol-related crashes, resulting in 146 deaths and over 3,000 injuries. During the Labor Day holiday weekend, nine people were killed and 388 were injured on our roadways. Two of those deaths involved alcohol.
“Though all agencies place an emphasis on enforcement throughout the year, this event further allows us to bring a heightened awareness of the drunk driving issue that continues to plaque our community,” said Lt. Joe Seelye, Traffic Commander for the Louisville Metro Police Department. “Hopefully this event will mobilize some of our citizens to become disciples in spreading the facts about DUI’s, the penalties for DUI’s, and the effects DUI’s have on families, victims, government resources and themselves.”
Violators face jail time, loss of their driver licenses, and steep financial consequences such as higher insurance rates, attorney fees, court costs, lost time at work, and the potential loss of job. When family, friends and co-workers find out, violators also often face tremendous personal embarrassment.
“Driving impaired is simply not worth the risk,” said Seelye. “So don’t take the chance. Remember, officers will be out in force and they will be watching, so ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.”
In addition to working with law enforcement, the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety is partnering with other organizations to help spread the word about the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign and to promote responsible choices. The Transit Authority of River City (TARC) and Yellow Cab have donated advertising space on some of their vehicles in the Louisville area. Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) set up a booth at the press conference to provide information and educational resources on a variety of topics such as preventing underage drinking and the every child deserves a designated driver program.
“MADD KY strongly supports all efforts to highlight and promote safe driving on our Kentucky roadways. MADD KY is grateful to be a part of this statewide campaign and we hope to shed light on the life-long lasting effects that impaired driving creates for victims and survivors,” stated Lois Windhorst, founder of MADD KY and Lead Louisville area volunteer. “Hopefully, working together with law enforcement, state officials as well as transportation agencies, we can help protect our communities from needless death and injury.”
In addition, Brown-Forman, CityScoot and Yellow Cab are teaming up to offer more than 2,000 safe ride vouchers at select locations in the Louisville Metro area between August 16 and September 2 as part of the campaign to encourage people to plan ahead and keep drunk drivers off the roads.
During the two week period, Brown-Forman will distribute safe ride vouchers at its branded promotions in bars located in the St. Matthews and Baxter Avenue corridors and the 4th Street Live entertainment district. For consumers wanting to plan ahead you may also go to www.soberrideky.com to sign up online for a CityScoot safe ride voucher. Patrons can redeem their voucher toward a safe ride home with CityScoot or Yellow Cab, courtesy of Brown-Forman.
Each safe ride voucher is valid for $15 and may be used with CityScoot and Yellow Cab, and sister companies Checker Cab and Cardinal Cab. All vouchers are for use during the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign dates and must be redeemed by midnight on Monday, September 2, 2013. Brown-Forman reminds you to please drink responsibly.
“The partnership with CityScoot and Yellow Cab encourages our community to enjoy the Labor Day Weekend celebrations responsibly and get home safely,” said Rob Frederick, Director of Corporate Responsibility for Brown-Forman. “This weekend brings friends and family together and there’s no better way to enrich the holiday experience than with a safe ride home.”
For more information, visit the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” Campaign Headquarters at www.nhtsa.gov/drivesober.