Washington State Patrol (WSP) troopers had a busy New Year’s…

Over the holiday weekend, the WSP – along with a dozen more law enforcement agencies – took part in a statewide emphasis to crackdown on impaired drivers under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

From December 31, 2016 to January 2, 2017, WSP troopers made 172 DUI arrests…think about that…172 DUI arrests in just two days…that is too high of a number. Just one DUI is too many.

In addition to the 172 DUI arrests, troopers issued 239 seat belt and 3,182 speeding violations.

Every holiday season we see an increase in the number of fatal collisions involving drivers under the influence. The WSP continues to strive to reach our Target Zero goal of zero traffic fatalities or serious injury collisions by the year 2030. At the end of 2016, we ran our stats and found troopers had made 12,948 DUI arrests; and we are under no illusion that we caught every single DUI in the state.

“Despite our extensive educational efforts, people continue to put themselves and others in danger by getting behind the wheel while impaired,” says Washington State Patrol Chief John R. Batiste.  “Drivers have options and their choices can make the difference between life and death.”

Here are a few safety tips to prevent impaired driving:

  • Choose a designated driver before heading out so you will have a safe ride home.
  • If you are intoxicated, call a car service, a taxi, use public transportation, or call a sober friend or family member.
  • Don’t let impaired friends or family get behind the wheel. Take their keys, drive them home, or arrange a safe ride home for them.
  • If you see an impaired driver on the road, call 911 immediately.