Thursday, May 14, 2009

Don't drink and drive!

The Frederick Police Department announced today they are joining with other federal, state and local highway safety and law enforcement officials across the nation to remind those who plan on using alcohol during The Memorial Day Weekend this year to act responsibly by designating sober drivers before parties begin. The Frederick Police Department will have saturation patrols during the Memorial Day weekend in an effort to prevent and reduce traffic accidents. We will also conduct DUI checkpoints and support any DUI Check Points conducted by the Frederick County Highway Safety Task Force under Checkpoint Strike force.

Memorial Day weekend is a time to travel, conduct Memorial ceremonies and has also become a time for family cookouts and parties. We ask that everyone use common sense this year and designate their sober driver in advance – before the festivities even begin.

Traffic accidents can happen anytime the volume of traffic increases and people are frustrated by delays. The ways to avoid an accident are listed below:

· Obey all traffic signs, signals, and speed limits

· Plan plenty of time for travel so you are not rushed
· If traveling long distances, get plenty of rest prior to starting your trip
· Require all passengers to buckle their seatbelts
· Use rest stops and change drivers to avoid fatigue

Kim C. Dine, Chief of Police, Frederick Police Department said, “Our officers will

be out there saving lives and reducing traffic accidents by enforcing traffic safety laws. Our proactive approach includes efforts at educating the public and apprising our citizens ahead of time to improve voluntary compliance. Enlightened communication with our citizens is one of the best ways to improve safety and the quality of life in our City. We want our citizens to know we will be out there protecting them and saving lives."

Whether you are just meeting a few friends after work at the corner pub or attending a party, if you plan on using alcohol, do not drive – and never let your friends drive if you think they are impaired.

Designating a sober driver before the local celebration begins and making sure friends don’t drive drunk are just two simple steps to help avoid a tragic crash or an arrest for impaired driving.

Designating a sober driver and not letting friends drive while impaired are just two of several simple steps to help avoid a tragic crash or an arrest for impaired driving. Other tips include:

  • Avoid drinking too much alcohol too fast.
  • Pace yourself—eat enough food, take breaks and alternate with non-alcoholic drinks.
  • Designate a sober driver before the party and give that person your car keys.
  • If you don’t have a designated driver, ask a sober friend for a ride home; call a cab, friend or family member to come and get you; or just stay where you are and sleep it off.
  • Never let a friend leave your sight if you think they are about to drive while impaired. Remember, Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive Drunk.
  • Always buckle up – it’s still your best defense against other impaired drivers.
If you are hosting a Memorial Day cook out or party:
  • Serve lots of food – particularly high-protein dishes;
  • Be sure to include lots of non-alcoholic beverages, desserts and coffee;
  • Be sure all of your guests designate their drivers in advance;
  • Help arrange ride-sharing with sober drivers; and
  • Keep the numbers for local cab companies handy, and take keys away from anyone who is thinking of driving while impaired.
Driving impaired or riding with someone who is impaired 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 driving while impaired can be really significant.

Don’t risk arrest or an accident that can damper all future celebrations for your families or friends. Designate your sober driver before the party begins.

(The Department is also requesting local radio stations to arrange if possible the broadcast of the attached Public Service Announcement. Please contact us for arrangements)

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