[12/31/15] WSP DUI Emphasis On For New Year’s Eve

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If you choose to drive while impaired this holiday weekend, the Washington State Patrol is committed to making sure you are arrested and successfully prosecuted.

The Washington Traffic Safety Commission is funding local emphasis patrols, in which troopers from the Washington State Patrol will work overtime to provide extra coverage at the hours when most DUI-related collisions occur. Since the emphasis patrols began on November 25, WSP troopers have made 1,205 DUI arrests statewide.

“Every impaired driver we arrest and take off the road is a potential life saved,” said WSP Chief John Batiste. “Impaired driving accidents are preventable; the choice begins before you get behind the wheel of a vehicle.”

In the emphasis patrols, troopers are guided by data that helps predict the areas where DUIs are most likely to cause a tragedy.

Anyone who witnesses an impaired or dangerous driver is strongly encouraged to call 9-1-1 and report the incident immediately.

Although enforcement is a key component of changing driver behavior, seat belts and other occupant protection devices are saving lives as well. Being a sober driver protects you from yourself; buckling up helps protect you from the irresponsible driver. Also, with winter weather conditions this holiday weekend, drivers need to slow down and keep adequate stopping distances.

There’s one more thing everyone can do to help make for a joyous and safe holiday season: use your influence to help keep others from driving while impaired. Saving a life is the best gift you can give this holiday season.