Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) DUI Enforcement Team officers will be deployed this weekend in an effort to stop and arrest alcohol and drug-impaired drivers.
DUI Saturation Patrols will be deployed on Saturday, June 3 between 6:00PM and 2:00AM in areas with high frequencies of DUI collisions and/or arrests, according to the LBPD, and is part of its ongoing traffic safety campaign. Officers will be looking for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment, when specially trained officers will be available when possible to evaluate those suspected of drug-impaired driving.
High visibility enforcement, including DUI checkpoints and saturation patrols, have proven to lower the number of persons killed and injured in alcohol or drug impaired crashes, according to the LBPD. Accidents caused by impaired drivers can be reduced by up to 20 percent through these routine and well-publicized measures.
Alcohol-involved collisions in California led to 1,155 deaths and nearly 24,000 injuries in 2014. Over the past three years, officers have investigated 999 DUI collisions, which claimed 10 lives and resulted in another 344 injuries.
In recent years, California has seen an increase in drug-impaired driving crashes. The LBPD supports the Office of Traffic Safety’s new effort aiming to educate all drivers that “DUI Doesn’t Just Mean Booze.” Prescription drugs and marijuana can also be impairing, especially in combination with alcohol or other drugs.
“Studies of California drivers have shown that 30 percent of drivers in fatal crashes had one or more drugs in their systems,” stated the release. “A study of active drivers showed more tested positive for drugs that may impair driving (14 percent) than did for alcohol (7.3 percent). Of the drugs, marijuana was most prevalent, at 7.4 percent, slightly more than alcohol.”
Drivers are encouraged to download the Designated Driver VIP, “DDVIP,” free mobile app for Android or iPhone, which helps users find nearby bars and restaurants that offer free incentives for designated sober drivers, social media tie-ins and a tab for finding commercial ride sharing services.
The cost of a ride home is cheap! Drivers caught driving impaired can expect the impact of a DUI arrest to include jail time, fines, fees, DUI classes, license suspensions and other expenses that can exceed $10,000, not to mention the embarrassment when friends and family find out.
Funding for this DUI operation is provided to the Long Beach Police Department by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, reminding everyone to ‘Report Drunk Driver – Call 9-1-1’.