MEDIA RELATIONS UNIT
December 18, 2009
Subject: DUI Enforcement Operation Kick Off December 18
There will be a DUI checkpoint on Friday, December 18 to kick off a 17-day winter holiday crackdown on drunk drivers. The operation is part of a nine-county, 125-department Bay Area Avoid coalition. Similar Avoid campaigns are in force in 41 of the state’s 58 counties.
Additional checkpoints are scheduled for two consecutive Sundays, December 27 and January 3, when the enforcement operation will end, according to Lieutenant Jim Calonico of the San Francisco Police Department Traffic Company. The SFPD Traffic Company will operate DUI saturation patrols several times during the holidays.
“We arrested 121 DUI suspects during a similar period last year,” said Lieutenant Calonico. “We hope that total will drop as motorists become more cognizant of the dangers of DUI and learn that it’s smart not to drink and drive. The foolproof method of avoiding arrest is to designate one person in your party who will stay completely sober and drive everyone else home.”
“California Highway Patrol officers from San Francisco and Marin county offices will saturate the freeways around Christmas and New Year’s Day,” said Captain Paul Fontana of the San Francisco CHP squad. The Marin squad covers the Golden Gate Bridge and its approaches.
Christopher J. Murphy, director of the California Office of Traffic Safety, which funds the campaign through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said, “Drunk driving is simply not worth the risk. Not only do you risk killing yourself or someone else, but the trauma and financial costs of a crash or an arrest for impaired driving can be significant.” He added that, “Violators often face jail time, the loss of their driver’s license, higher insurance rates, attorney’s fees, time away from work, and dozens of other expenses. Remember, if you are at the limit or over the limit, you are under arrest.”
For more information, please contact:
Lieutenant Jim Calonico, Traffic Company, 553-1927
850 Bryant Street, Room 549, San Francisco, CA. 94103