Clinton County Sheriff’s Office Joins Highway 61 Enforcement Mobilization To Reduce Drunk Driving Crashes. Read complete statement here:
Clinton, Iowa – This weekend local, county and state law enforcement officers will patrol U.S. Highway 61 from Dubuque to Keokuk as part of the Highway 61 Impaired Driving Enforcement Project to reduce drunk and drugged driving. The mobilization, which will include high-visibility enforcement all along Highway 61, will run from August 15th through the 17th.
Clinton County Sheriff Rick Lincoln said his deputies will be aggressively looking fordrunk and drugged drivers during the mobilization and will arrest anyone caught driving impaired.
Although it is illegal in all 50 states to drive drunk, far too many people get behind the wheel after consuming too much alcohol. The latest data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration underscore the serious nature of this problem. In 2012, 10,322 people died on our nation’s roads in crashes involving drunk drivers. That is nearly one drunk-driving fatality every 51 minutes.
“Every year, about one fourth of all Iowa traffic deaths involve an impaired driver,” said Sheriff Lincoln. “Of Iowa’s 317 total traffic deaths last year, more than 75 involved impaired drivers.
Sheriff Lincoln added that holidays such as the Labor Day holiday can be particularly dangerous. Strong traffic enforcement during the 3-day holiday period has brought a reduction in the number of impaired driving fatalities in recent years. From 2009-2013, only 3 of Iowa’s 17 deaths during the Labor Day holiday could be attributed to impaired drivers. “Research has shown that high-visibility reduces impaired driving fatalities by as much as 20%. By joining the Highway 61 mobilization effort, we hope to make Clinton Counties’ roads safer for everyone,” said Sheriff Lincoln.
“We want to remind everyone that getting behind the wheel drunk is a terrible idea. Unfortunately, not only does drinking impair your ability to operate a vehicle safely, it also impairs your judgment and good sense about whether you can, or should drive. If you have any doubt about your sobriety, do not get behind the wheel. If you did not plan ahead to designate a sober driver, call a taxi, a sober friend or family member or use public transportation. If you do chose to drive impaired, you will be arrested.
Sheriff Lincoln noted that being arrested for driving drunk brings a wide range of negative consequences into one’s life. Drunk drivers face jail time, loss of their driver license, 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 drunk is simply not worth the risk. So don’t take the chance. Remember, we will be out in force and we will be watching, so ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over,’” said Sheriff Lincoln.