Labor Day is the unofficial end of summer and we celebrate with barbecues and road trips. But be aware as you hit the highways that the Labor Day holiday weekend is one of the deadliest times of the year in terms of drunk-driving fatalities. Impaired driving is one of the deadliest crimes which as become a serious safety epidemic in our country.
According to the National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA) during the 2020 Labor Day holiday period (Sept.4-Sept.8), there were 530 traffic fatalities nationwide. A total of 46% of those fatalities involved drivers who had been drinking and 38% of the fatalities involved drivers who were over the legal limit. Last year the Iowa Department of Transportation reports seven fatalities occurred over the 2021 Labor Day holiday period.
As part of the National Drunk Driving Campaign, “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over”, Iowa Law Enforcement will beef up their commitment to saving lives on Iowa’s streets and highways. This initiative is part of NHTSA’s effort to save lives by focusing on drunk/drugged drivers. Together with other law enforcement agencies across the state, officers with the Marshalltown Police Department and the Marshall County Sheriff’s Office Traffic Unit will be out participating in this heightened enforcement effort this Labor Day weekend.
Ultimately, drinking and driving is a choice, and it is a choice that puts all road users at risk. Please plan ahead for this weekend and designate a sober driver or use a ride service to get home safely. If you see a drunk driver on the road, please contact your local law enforcement. Consider your family and friends as you take to the roadway this holiday weekend. Making responsible decisions can be a life or death choice for your or someone you know and love.
AUTHORITY: Sgt. Casee Veren (641.754.5725 or email@example.com)