HARRISBURG PA – They’re not hiding. Area police department patrols, state troopers, and other law enforcement officials purposely want drivers to see them during the Labor Day holiday, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation said Wednesday (Aug. 30, 2017), in what it called a “high-visibility enforcement effort” against drivers under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Through Monday (Sept. 4, 2017), Pennsylvania DUI Task Forces, the State Police, and officers from several local police departments “will conduct checkpoints and roving patrols to target drug and alcohol-impaired drivers,” PennDOT said. It will use $4 million in National Highway Traffic Safety Administration funding to pay for municipal police overtime, equipment and other associated costs.
During 2016, according to PennDOT data, there were 1,153 drug-related crashes resulting in 32 fatalities in the Philadelphia region that includes Montgomery County. Over last year’s Labor Day holiday weekend alone, there were 106 drug-related crashes and two drug-related driving fatalities statewide, it added.
And it doesn’t matter whether drugs ingested by drivers were legally prescribed or not, the department warned. “Impaired drivers are incapable of safe driving operations regardless of the substance; illegal or legal,” it said, urging the public to closely read warning labels on prescription or over-the-counter medications to determine if they could affect operating a vehicle.
The weekend enforcement activities are part of the national “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign.
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