PLYMOUTH — Labor Day weekend is coming up, and the Indiana State Police Bremen Post is warning residents against drinking and driving.
The department is taking part in the national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over enforcement mobilization to educate motorists about the dangers and consequences of impaired driving. Now until Sept. 6, officers will be increasing patrols, showing zero tolerance for anyone caught driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
The extra high-visibility enforcement is funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) through the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute (ICJI).
“Driving under the influence crashes and arrests are 100% preventable if people choose to drive sober or take advantage of one of the many options available to get home safely if they are impaired,” said Lieutenant Chad Larsh, Bremen Post District Commander. “Our goal is for everyone to make the right choice.”
About 28 people die in the U.S. in drunk driving crashes every day. That’s about one person every 52 minutes and more than 10,000 annually, according to NHTSA.
In Indiana, drunk driving has been on the rise. Of the 898 traffic fatalities that occurred last year in the state, 151, or 17%, were alcohol-related. That’s up from 130 in 2019. During Labor Day weekend alone, there were 12 fatal collisions with one involving a driver over the legal limit.
In Indiana, it is illegal to drive with a BAC of .08 or higher. In addition, drivers under 21 with a BAC of .02 or higher are subject to fines and a license suspension for up to one year.
Officers will be on the lookout for all forms of impairment, in which the consequences can include thousands of dollars in legal fees, increased insurance rates, loss of license, a criminal record and possible jail time.