The Grove Police Department will be joining with thousands of other law enforcement and highway safety agencies across the nation this holiday weekend to crack down on drunk driving.

Drunk driving is one of America’s deadliest crimes.

In 2006, more than 13,000 people died in highway crashes involving a driver or motorcycle rider with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher.

The picture for motorcycle riders is particularly bleak. Forty-one percent of the 2,007 motorcycle riders who died in single-vehicle crashes in 2006 had BAC levels of .08 or higher.  

From Friday, August 15th,  throughout the Labor Day weekend, Grove Police will be participating in the Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest.  crackdown on impaired driving.

 “Make no mistake. The message is simple. No matter what you drive—a passenger car, pickup, sport utility vehicle or motorcycle—if we catch you driving impaired, we will arrest you. No exceptions. No excuses,” said Grove Police Chief Mark Morris.

“We will be out in force conducting sobriety checkpoints, saturation patrols and using undercover officers to get more drunk drivers off the road—and save lives that might otherwise be lost,” he said.

Driving with a BAC of .08 or higher is illegal in every state.

“We continue to see far too many people suffer debilitating injuries and loss of their loved ones as a result of impaired driving,” Morris said.

“We want everyone to have a safe and happy holiday and drunk driving is simply not worth the risk,” Morris said.

“Not only do drunk drivers risk killing themselves or someone else, but the trauma and financial costs of a crash or an arrest for impaired driving can be significant,” Morris noted. “Violators often face jail time, the loss of their driver’s license, higher insurance rates, attorney fees, time away from work, and dozens of other expenses. So don’t take the chance. Remember, if you are over the limit, you are under arrest.”

Officer M.G. Wells, who will be on the street over the holiday weekend helping to enforce impaired driving laws, said that sobriety checkpoints are an important part of getting drunk drivers off the street.

“We consider checkpoints to be a service to residents and visitors. They are a way for taxpayers to see their dollars at work,” Wells said.

“Impaired driving is a big problem, and this way we can get more impaired drivers off the street,” he said.

He noted that underage drinking is also a big problem in Grove, and is just as serious an issue as methamphetamine and other drug use.

“Chemical abuse is chemical abuse,” Wells said. “There are laws against underage drinking for a reason.”

The national Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest. impaired driving crackdown is a prevention program organized by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that focuses on combining high-visibility enforcement with heightened public awareness through advertising and publicity.  

This year’s effort is supported by $11 million in paid-national advertising to help put everyone on notice that if they are caught driving impaired, they will be arrested.  

For more information, visit www.Stopimpaireddriving.org.