Over a 25-day period, the La Porte Police Department issued 5 traffic citations and made 1 arrest as part of the national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over mobilization.
About 230 Indiana law-enforcement agencies joined thousands nationwide to increase roving patrols, saturation patrols and sobriety checkpoints. Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over is supported with National Highway Traffic Safety Administration funds distributed by the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute.
“Highly visible, data-driven traffic enforcement has been proven to deter impaired driving,” said Captain Pat Hemphill. “Our commitment to enforcing the law and saving lives continues throughout the year.”
In every state, it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher. In Indiana, drivers under 21 with a BAC of .02 or higher are subject to fines and a license suspension for up to 1 year.
Getting arrested for operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OWI) means going to jail and losing your driver’s license. The average cost? About $10,000, including car towing and repairs, attorney fees, fines, court costs, lost time at work and other hefty expenses. For more information, visit https://nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/drunk-driving.
Drive High - Get an OWI
Impaired driving includes more than alcohol, and there is no quick field test for the many prescription, over-the-counter and illegal drugs that can impair drivers.
Taking a new drug or a higher dose? Talk with a doctor or don’t drive until you know what effects it has. Even over-the-counter medication can cause impairment, especially when combined with alcohol or a second drug.
Motorcycles are about 3 percent of registered vehicles, but are dramatically over-represented in impaired driving crashes. And the more that bikers are impaired, the less likely they are to wear helmets.
Impaired driving alternatives
With all of today’s options for getting home safely, there’s no excuse for getting behind the wheel impaired as it endangers you and everyone else around you. Law enforcement recommends these safe alternatives to impaired driving:
- Designate, or be, a sober driver.
- Use public transportation.
- Call a cab or a ridesharing service.
- Download the SaferRide mobile app on the Android Play Store or the Apple iTunes Store. This app only has three options: call a taxi, call a friend, and identify your location for pickup.
- Celebrate at home or a place where you can stay until sober.
- Throwing a party? Offer non-alcoholic beverages and plenty of food.
- Never provide alcohol to minors.
- Ask young drivers about their plans.
- Friend or family member about to drive? Take the keys and make alternate arrangements.
Report impaired drivers
If you see an impaired driver, turn off the road away from the vehicle and call 911. Signs of impaired driving include:
- Weaving, swerving, drifting, or straddling the center line
- Driving at a very slow speed
- Braking erratically
- Making wide turns
- Stopping without cause
- Responding slowly to traffic signals
- Driving after dark with headlights off
- Almost striking an object or vehicle
- Driving on the wrong side of the road
- Turning abruptly or illegally
Drivers should also watch for impaired pedestrians who may not be paying attention to their surroundings.