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State Patrol to Focus on Drunk Drivers During Holiday Travel Period

The Georgia State Patrol will be watching out for drunk drivers, those driving too fast and not wearing seatbelts this holiday weekend.

Planning to attend a party over the holidays? If alcohol will be part of the celebration, the advises designating a sober driver.

Drunk drivers will be the focus of enforcement efforts over the holiday period, but troopers will also be watching for drivers and passengers who are not wearing their seatbelts, and drivers exceeding the speed limit.

“Each holiday period, troopers are called to investigate traffic crashes involving serious injuries or fatalities, and these crashes could have been prevented,” said Colonel Mark McDonough, Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Safety in a released statement.

In 2010, three people were killed and 280 injured during 351 Christmas holiday period accidents investigated by GSP. Troopers also arrested 95 people for driving under the influence. During the 2010 New Year’s holiday period, troopers arrested 174 people for DUI and investigated 320 accidents that led to 270 injuries and seven fatalities.

If you're headed out of town, GSP reminds you to take care of a few things on your vehicle:

  • Check the air pressure in all tires
  • Make sure all lights and signals are working
  • Check fluid levels in your vehicle
  • Make sure all other equipment is in good repair

“Before leaving on the trip, make sure everyone is properly restrained, take frequent rest stops along the way, and don’t speed,” McDonough added.

The Christmas holiday travel period begins Friday, Dec. 23 at 6 p.m. and ends Monday night, Dec. 26.

The New Year’s holiday period begins Friday, Dec. 30 at 6 p.m. and ends Monday night, Jan. 2, 2012. Both holiday periods are 78-hours long.

“This is a festive time of the year and we want everyone to enjoy the holiday season,” Colonel McDonough noted, “but we also want everyone to be safe on our highways.”

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