TOPEKA POLICE -- The problem of impaired-driving is a serious one. While America witnessed a decline in the number of impaired-driving fatalities from 2007-2008, the numbers are still too high. The Topeka Police Department announced today that it will join other law enforcement agencies throughout the country in support of an intensive crackdown on impaired driving this August 19–September 6, known by its tagline, Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest.
In 2008 alone, nearly 12,000 people died in crashes in which a driver or motorcycle rider was at or above the legal limit, according to the latest statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The age group with the highest percentage of alcohol impaired drivers in fatal crashes is young people age 21-24.
In every State as well as the District of Columbia it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 grams per deciliter or higher. Approximately 10,000 police agencies will participate in this year’s mid-August through Labor Day crackdown, including law enforcement officers representing every State, the District of Columbia and many U.S. cities and towns.
According to the latest data, 32 percent of fatalities in motor vehicle traffic crashes involved a driver or motorcycle rider with a BAC of .08 or above — an average of one fatality every 45 minutes.
Topeka Police officers will be aggressively looking for all impaired drivers during the crackdown and will arrest anyone they find driving while impaired — regardless of age, vehicle type, or time of day.
Violators often face jail time, loss of their driver licenses, or being sentenced to use ignition interlocks. Their insurance rates go up. Other financial hits include attorney fees, court costs, lost time at work, and the potential loss of job or job prospects. When family, friends and co-workers find out, violators can also face tremendous personal embarrassment and humiliation.
The national Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest. crackdown is led by NHTSA and combines high-visibility enforcement with heightened public awareness through advertising and publicity.
For more information on the crackdown, visit the High-Visibility Enforcement Campaign Headquarters at www.StopImpairedDriving.org.