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Edition Date: December 18, 2006
Drive Hammered - Get Nailed
from the Washington Traffic Safety Commission

Extra DUI patrols begin

From now until Jan. 1, 2007, extra DUI enforcement patrols will be on the road statewide to rid the roads of impaired drivers during the holiday season In King County, officers from Auburn, Bellevue, Bothell, Burien, Clyde Hill, Duvall, Enumclaw, Federal Way, Issaquah, Kent, Kirkland, Maple Valley, Mercer Island, Newcastle, Normandy Park, Port of Seattle, Redmond, Renton, Sammamish, Sea-Tac, Snoqualmie and Woodinville police departments will conduct 847 extra patrol hours combing the streets and roadways to make them safer for everyone.

This “Drive Hammered - Get Nailed” campaign is a joint effort between the Washington Traffic Safety Commission, law enforcement statewide and the King County DUI and Traffic Safety Task Force.

Nationally, alcohol-related driving fatalities are rising. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in the U.S. during 2004, 15,045 people were killed in crashes involving drinking drivers and during 2005, 15,172 Americans died in crashes involving drinking drivers, representing 36 percent of the 42,636 people killed in all traffic crashes.

That is why the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) recently released the “Impaired Driving Guidebook: Three Keys to Renewed Focus and Success” nationwide. The Guidebook is designed to encourage a renewed effort from every law enforcement agency to work vigorously toward the elimination of impaired driving.

Coinciding with the DUI emphasis patrols, on December 12 – 13, law enforcement, health, legal and safety professionals will gather for the 19th Annual Impaired Driver Conference taking place at the Sea-Tac Marriott. One of the features of the conference this year is a presentation by Jennifer Green of the Maricopa County, Arizona, Attorney’s Office on “The CSI Effect,” how DUI trials are being impacted by the public’s “schooling” of crime scene investigations by popular television programming.

Drunk driving is one of the most frequently committed violent crimes in America, and in Washington state it is the single largest contributing factor in fatal collisions.

Between 2000 and 2005, there were 1,456 lives lost on Washington roadways as a result of drinking drivers.

In 2005 there were 41,972 people charged with DUI in Washington. The average blood alcohol level of people arrested for DUI is about .14. That’s almost twice the legal limit of .08.