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DRPA Police Force Joins National Public Safety Campaign
Police Officers from the Delaware River Port Authority will be cracking down on drunk drivers as part of the annual holiday season “Drive Sober or get Pulled Over” 2011 Statewide Crackdown. Beginning December 5 and running through January 2, 2012, local and state police will conduct saturation patrols and sobriety checkpoints, looking for drivers who may be driving while intoxicated.
A concentrated national effort, the campaign helps to raise awareness about the dangers of drinking and driving through high visibility enforcement and public education tools, including posters, banners and mobile video display signs. Special variable message signs will be located at all four DRPA bridges. Launched nationally in 1999, the program works to combat drunk driving during some of the busiest travel times of the year.
DRPA CEO, John J. Matheussen, says “We consider it a top priority to participate in this ongoing critical law enforcement effort that is designed to save lives and keep our bridges safe for our customers.”
DRPA Police Chief, David McClintock, says “This initiative brings attention to not only the serious fines and penalties drunk drivers can face, but also the grave danger those drivers pose to everyone else on the road.”
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that nationally impaired drivers kill nearly 18,000 people each year. In 2010, 149 people were killed as a result of alcohol-related crashes in New Jersey. That number represents 25 percent of the 583 traffic fatalities reported in the State.
The enforcement program is funded by a $5,000 grant from the State of New Jersey, Division of Highway Traffic Safety.
Traffic safety experts recommend if someone plans to drink alcoholic beverages they should designate a driver who will not drink alcohol before going out, take mass transit or a taxi home, or, spend the night where the activity is held.
The Delaware River Port Authority is a regional transportation agency. DRPA owns and operates the Benjamin Franklin, Walt Whitman, Commodore Barry and Betsy Ross Bridges, and PATCO. The Authority owns the RiverLink ferry.
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