State Police to crack down on impaired driving during the Fourth of July holiday

New York State Police

OSWEGO COUNTY – The New York State Police will increase patrols to crack down on drunk and drugged driving and other traffic infractions over the Fourth of July holiday. This special enforcement period will begin at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, July 3, 2024, and run through 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, July 7, 2024.

New York State Police Superintendent Steven G. James said, “Our members work vigilantly year-round to keep our roadways safe and intercept impaired and reckless drivers, and even more so during holiday periods when celebrations may include alcohol. While we want everyone to enjoy their Independence Day, we ask they do so responsibly by designating a sober driver if they have been drinking. Together, we can work to prevent senseless tragedies that are caused by impaired and reckless drivers.”

During this enforcement period, drivers can expect to encounter sobriety checkpoints and DWI patrols. Troopers 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 when they travel New York roadways.

Troopers will be using both marked State Police vehicles and Concealed Identity Traffic Enforcement (CITE) 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 everyday traffic but are unmistakable as emergency vehicles once the emergency lighting is activated.

During last year’s Fourth of July enforcement period, Troopers issued 12,991 total tickets, arrested 193 people for DWI and investigated 949 crashes, including 158 personal injury crashes and five fatalities.

The Fourth of July initiative is partially funded by the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee (GTSC). The GTSC and the New York State STOP-DWI Foundation remind motorists that their “Have a Plan” mobile app, is available for Apple, Droid and Windows smartphones. The app enables New Yorkers to locate and call a taxi or rideshare service and program a designated driver list. It also provides information on DWI laws and penalties, and provides a way to report a suspected impaired driver.

If you drive drunk or drugged, you not only put your life and the lives of others at risk, you could face arrest, jail time, and substantial fines and attorney fees. The average drinking and driving arrest costs up to $10,000.

Arrested drunk and drugged drivers face the loss of their driver’s license, higher insurance rates, and dozens of unanticipated expenses from attorney fees, fines and court costs, car towing and repairs, and lost time at work.

The New York State Police, and GTSC recommend these simple tips to prevent impaired driving:

  • Plan a safe way home before the fun begins;
  • Before drinking, designate a sober driver;
  • If you’re impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation;
  • Use your community’s sober ride program;
  • If you suspect a driver is drunk or impaired on the road, don’t hesitate to contact local law enforcement;
  • If you know someone who is about to drive or ride while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely.

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