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posted: 12/21/2012 12:11 PM

Grayslake police begin 'Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over' holiday crackdown

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Submitted by Grayslake Police Department

The Grayslake Police Department announces its plans for the 2012 Holiday "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" and "Click It or Ticket" crackdown.

The intensified enforcement effort to combat late-night impaired driving and safety belt violations underscores the disproportionate number of traffic deaths occurring during late-night hours.

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The stepped-up enforcement began Dec. 17 and runs through New Year's Eve. Enforcement efforts will concentrate on the deadly night time hours between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.

According to data from the Illinois Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the midnight to 3 a.m. time frame is the deadliest time on Illinois roadways and 9 p.m. is the time of day when data shows that alcohol involvement and low seat belt use begins to play a much more significant role in motor vehicle fatalities. Data shows alcohol and lack of belt use continues throughout the nighttime hours until 6 a.m.

In 2011, during the Christmas Holiday time frame, (crashes occurring from 6 p.m. on Dec. 23 through 11:59 a.m. on Dec. 26), 13 people died in motor vehicle crashes and five of those fatalities involved a driver who had been drinking. In addition, 502 people were injured in crashes during this time. During the New Year's Holiday time frame, (crashes occurring from 6 p.m. on Dec. 30 through 11:59 a.m. on Jan. 2), nine people died in motor vehicle crashes and three of those fatalities involved a drunken driver.

Impaired driving is a deadly crime prevalent throughout America and is especially common among young males 21 to 34 years old. To crackdown on impaired driving and safety belt law violators this holiday season, law enforcement in Illinois is placing special emphasis on these dangerous driving practices, especially during the late-night hours. The Grayslake Police Department will be joining those efforts and we will be stepping up our late-night enforcement efforts, making sure impaired drivers are off the road and motorists are buckled up.

Drivers need to be responsible and take simple precautions. Grayslake Police Department recommends:

• Plan ahead. Designate a sober driver before going out and give that person your keys.

• If you are impaired, call a taxi, use mass transit or call a sober friend or family member to get you home safely.

• Promptly report impaired drivers you see on the roadways to law enforcement.

• Always wear your safety belt and make sure all passengers are buckled up. It is your best defense against an impaired driver.

The law enforcement crackdown runs concurrently with a media campaign that will remind motorists, "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" and "Click It or Ticket" and is administered by the Illinois Department of Transportation with funds made available via the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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