July 02, 2024

Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign

Louisiana police have July 4 flashing light show for impaired drivers

The Bogalusa Police Department will be participating in the "Drive Sober of Get Pulled Over" campaign sponsored by the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission through July 7, 2024.  

Below is a statement from the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission:

Fireworks shows are a hallmark of Independence Day. But flashing police lights are the only show for impaired drivers as the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission begins its statewide Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign.

According to AAA, a record 60.6 million people will travel by car this 4th of July. Law enforcement officers across Louisiana will be looking specifically for impaired drivers this holiday weekend, and those who fail a sobriety test will be arrested, LHSC Executive Director Lisa Freeman said.

“This is a Louisiana campaign to keep Louisiana citizens safe from the scourge of impaired driving,” Freeman said. “People should be able to celebrate without worrying about getting hit by a drunk driver.”

LHSC has made funds available to Louisiana law enforcement agencies to schedule extra troopers, officers, and deputies to patrol the roads and interstates through Sunday, July 7. These law enforcement officers have been trained to spot behaviors that indicate a driver is impaired.

“If a driver has a blood-alcohol concentration of .08 or higher, that driver is legally impaired and subject to arrest,” Freeman said. “Actual impairment can begin with just one alcoholic beverage. Bottom line: If you’re drinking, you shouldn’t be driving.”

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, just a small amount of alcohol can cause a decline in visual functions, an inability to perform two simultaneous tasks, reduced coordination, an inability to steer, and a reduced response to emergency driving situations.

Motor vehicle crashes involving drivers who have been drinking kill and injure hundreds of people every year in Louisiana. The statistics are generally worse during holiday periods. From 2018-2022, 12 people were killed and 254 people were injured in alcohol-related crashes during the Independence Day holiday period, according to the Center for Analytics and Research in Transportation Safety at LSU.

“We’ve made so much progress in making roads safer and making vehicles safer, but we continue to see these tragedies,” Freeman said. “Unfortunately, you can never make a road or a car safe enough for an impaired driver. Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over is an important tool for us to protect all road users.”

Besides refusing to drive impaired, avoiding distractions behind the wheel such as a cell phone, driving the speed limit, and wearing a seatbelt greatly reduce the risk of being injured or killed in a motor vehicle crash.

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