“Our concentration will be on drivers under the influence (DUI),” Douglas County Chief Deputy Stan Copeland said Friday. “We’re assigning most of our traffic units to the hours when we see the most DUIs.”
Copeland said these hours are from about 9 p.m., when it’s just getting dark and people are leaving outdoor activities, until 4 a.m., when many partygoers are returning home.
“The best advice I can offer is to have a non-drinking, designated driver,” Copeland said. “Then you don’t have to worry.”
Capt. Darin Shaw of the Douglasville Police traffic division said Friday that city patrols will be beefed up during the holiday period, targeting the interstate and other heavily traveled streets and roads.
“We’re going to be doing a lot of road checks, looking for DUIs, open containers, driving under suspended licenses and not using seatbelts,” Shaw said.
The Governor’s Office on Highway Safety (GOHS) announced a “100 Days of Summer Heat” enforcement program to combat speeders and DUIs. State Patrol officers will be enforcing the state’s “Over the Limit, Under Arrest” policy.
“Drunk drivers will go to jail,” said Bob Dallas, GOHS director. “No warning tickets. No exceptions.”
Dallas said any driver with an alcohol blood concentration of .08 is considered driving under the influence and will be arrested.
“Driving while impaired just isn’t worth this incredible risk,” Dallas said. “Regardless of age or level of driving experience, drivers who consume too many spirits while getting into the holiday spirit should find a safe and sober ride home,” he said.
Dallas said drivers with an alcohol level of .08 or higher are 11 times more likely to die in a car crash than if no alcohol was involved.
“Almost half the 14 Georgia traffic deaths during the 2007 July 4 holiday involved at least one drunk driver,” he said.
The 100 Days of Heat campaign will run though the Labor Day weekend in September. The 78-hour Fourth of July holiday travel period runs from 6 p.m., Thursday, July 2, through midnight, Sunday, July 5.