WEST ORANGE, NJ - Law enforcement officers from West Orange will be cracking down on drunk drivers as part of the 2015 Labor Day statewide 'Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over' campaign. The program began on Aug. 21 and runs through Sept. 7.
As part of the initiative, the Division of Highway Traffic Safety has provided $5,000 grants to the following local law enforcement agencies Final Grantee List located throughout the state to run the two-week campaign. While West Orange is participating, it did not receive a grant this year.
Local and state law enforcement officers are conducting sobriety checkpoints and roving patrols, looking for motorists who may be driving while intoxicated.
"The purpose of this national campaign is to undertake visible, targeted impaired driving enforcement during the late summer/Labor Day holiday period, which traditionally is a time when drunk driving increases," said Sgt. Tito John, supervisor for the West Orange Traffic Bureau/ Community Services Unit.
'Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over' is a national campaign designed 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. Launched across the U.S. in 1999, the program works to combat drunk driving during the busy summer travel season including the Labor Day holiday period.
In 2013 alcohol-impaired fatalities accounted for 27 percent of New Jersey’s motor vehicle fatalities.
“More than 10,000 people are killed in the United States each year in alcohol-impaired driving crashes, and these crashes cost our society nearly $50 billion annually,” said Gary Poedubicky, acting director of the Division of Highway Traffic Safety. “There is a zero tolerance message for this campaign. If drivers are caught operating their vehicle while impaired they will be arrested.”
Law enforcement agencies participating in the ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ 2015 crackdown offer the following advice:
- If you plan to drink, designate a driver, someone who will not drink alcohol, before going out.
- Take mass transit, a taxi or ask a sober friend to drive you home.
- Spend the night where the activity is held.
- Report impaired drivers to law enforcement. In New Jersey, drivers may dial #77 to report a drunk or aggressive driver.
- Always buckle up, every ride, regardless of your seating position in the vehicle. It’s your best defense against an impaired driver.
- If you’re intoxicated and traveling on foot, the safest way to get home is to take a cab or have a sober friend or family member drive you to your doorstep.