Local police departments are stepping up patrols for the holidays to deter intoxicated or impaired driving. The Putnam County Sheriff department has increased patrols on the lookout for drunk drivers during the upcoming holidays. The extra sheriff’s deputies will be deployed until January 2nd. The advance announcement of the stepped up anti-drunk driving efforts is aimed at discouraging drunk driving.
Sheriff Donald Smith says people should make arrangements for getting home safely from parties, such as using taxis or designated drivers. This year, the STOP-DWI Foundation has created a new GPS enabled smart phone app called “Have a Plan” that helps users find safe rides home wherever the need may arise.
The app is available as a free download for smart phone users. Smart phone users may access the app at online or their app store.
Smith says historically, holiday festivities usually gives rise to increased incidents of impaired driving and drinking related crashes, resulting in injuries and deaths on New York roadways. He cited research showing that high-visibility enforcement can reduce fatalities caused by drunken driving by as much as 20 percent.
While STOP-DWI efforts across New York have led to significant reductions in the numbers of alcohol and drug-related fatalities, Smith says too many lives are still being lost because of crashes caused by drunk or impaired drivers.