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The original item was published from 7/2/2022 7:01:29 PM to 7/24/2022 12:00:01 AM.

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Sheriff's Office

Posted on: July 2, 2022

[ARCHIVED] Sheriff's Office participating in holiday weekend DWI Crackdown

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The Washington County Sheriff’s Office is once again  participating in the statewide STOP-DWI High Visibility Engagement Campaign which began July 1st and runs through July 5.

The Fourth of July extended weekend is historically a deadly period for impaired driving.

The STOP-DWI July 4th High Visibility Engagement Campaign is one of many statewide initiatives promoted by STOP-DWI NY and the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee that aim to further reduce the incidence of drunk and impaired driving.

According to NHTSA, 11,654 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes that involved an alcohol-impaired driver in 2020. That same year, 493 people died in motor vehicle traffic crashes over the July 4th holiday period (6 p.m. July 2 to 5:59 a.m. July 6). Forty-one percent  (201) of those fatalities occurred in alcohol-impaired driving crashes. With many Fourth of July festivities wrapping up in the evening or late at night, more cars will be on the roads at night.

During the 2020 July 4th holiday period, of the 201 people who died in alcohol-impaired motor vehicle traffic crashes, 85% of the fatalities occurred in nighttime crashes (6 p.m.–5:59 a.m.). The 4th of July holiday period is consistently one of the deadliest times of year on the nation’s roads. From 2016 to 2020, there were 901 people killed in drunk-driving crashes over the 4th of July holiday period. Thirty-nine percent (542) of the drivers killed were alcohol-impaired (with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher), and more than half (51%) were between the ages of 21-34. During the 2020 July 4th holiday period, 60% of those who died in alcohol-impaired crashes were in a crash involving at least one driver or motorcycle operator with a BAC at or above .15. That’s almost twice the legal limit in most states.

This Fourth of July, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, and NHTSA urge drivers to designate a  sober driver before heading out for the evening. If you plan on drinking, plan how you will get around without driving. If you wait until after you’ve been drinking to make this decision,  you’re already too impaired to make the right choices.

Remember these tips for a safe Independence Day weekend:

If you celebrate Independence Day with alcohol and decide to get behind the wheel of a  vehicle, you aren’t just putting yourself in danger; you put everyone on the road at risk.  Plan ahead for a safe and sober ride every time you drink. Stay safe for the people in your life — loved ones, parents or children, your buddies. Drive sober to protect them and to protect yourself.

Remember that it is never okay to drink and drive. Even if you’ve had only one alcoholic beverage, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation or a ride service to get home safely.

If you see a drunk driver on the road, call 911.

See a friend who is about to drink and drive? Take the keys away and make arrangements to get your friend home safely.

You can help to make a difference by Having a Sober Plan! Download the “Have a Plan”  mobile app and you will always be able to find a safe ride home:  Impaired driving is completely preventable. All it takes is a little planning.

For more information on impaired driving, visit

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