New York State Police and local law enforcement agencies are increasing patrols to crack down on drunk and drugged driving and other traffic infractions during the Fourth of July holiday weekend.
State troopers will conduct sobriety checkpoints and target reckless and aggressive driving statewide in an effort to keep New York highways safe during one of the busiest summer holidays for travel. The increased patrols began Friday and will continue through Sunday.
"While the July Fourth weekend is a time to celebrate and spend time with family and friends, too often drinking leads to poor decisions when it is time to go home,” Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said. “To ensure safety on our roads this holiday, State Police and local law enforcement will be cracking down on impaired driving of any kind.”
Last year, the State Police issued nearly 13,410 vehicle and traffic tickets during the Fourth of July weekend. Troopers arrested 249 people for DWI and investigated 187 crashes, which resulted in two fatalities.
During this enforcement period, drivers can expect a number of sobriety checkpoints and DWI patrols. Law enforcement will also be looking for motorists who are using their phones and other electronic devices while behind the wheel. Drivers should also remember to "move over" for stopped emergency and hazard vehicles on the side of the road when they travel New York roadways.
“Troopers will be highly visible this weekend on the lookout for impaired, drugged, and reckless drivers,” New York State Police Superintendent Keith M. Corlett said. “Our message is simple: If you drink and drive, it's likely that you will end up in jail. Stay safe and don't make a bad decision that costs your life or the life of someone else."
Troopers will be using both marked State Police vehicles and Concealed Identity Traffic Enforcement vehicles as part of the operation. The CITE vehicles allow troopers to more easily identify motorists who are using handheld devices while driving. These vehicles blend in with every day traffic but are unmistakable as emergency vehicles once the emergency lighting is activated.
"Driving impaired is one of the most dangerous things a motorist can do, especially now at this critical time for our healthcare system,” DMV Commissioner and Chair of the Governor's Traffic Safety Committee Mark J.F. Schroeder said.
The Fourth of July initiative is partially funded by the Governor's Traffic Safety Committee.