Yakima Police Say Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over
Yakima Police Officers are busy this holiday week trying to find and arrest impaired drivers. The local patrols are coupled with patrols around the state by the Washington State Patrol and 120 police agencies. Officials from the Washington State Traffic Safety Commission say the statewide patrols started on December 14 and will continue until the new year. The themes this year? Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over and If You Feel Different, You Drive Different - Drive High Get a DUI.
The campaign has been created to educate drivers about the danger of impaired driving.
During the week of December 11 through December 17 Yakima Police Officers made a total of 719 traffic stops and issued 368 citations. Officers also investigated 26 collisions, 13 the result of drivers not stopping for a red light.
8 drivers in the city were also arrested for Driving Under the Influence of drugs or alchol.
But they say that means many other drivers who were impaired were not stopped. Each night officers say they stop "multiple" DUI drivers.
In the month of November Yakima Police officers stopped and arrested 62 drivers impaired drivers and removed them from city streets.
What's the reason for the patrols? Earlier this year the Yakima Police Chief, Matthew Murray wrote a letter to the community in which he says "the culture of anything goes on Yakima streets must change." More than 20 fatality crashes have been reported this year within city limits and numerous serious injury crashes involving vehicles and motorcycles. Capt. Jay Seely says Officers are expected to make 3 to 4 traffic stops everyday to slow drivers and send a message that traffic is being monitored in Yakima.
Officers are finding a lot of drivers who aren't obeying traffic laws.
Police say if you plan to drink and drive especially at a holiday party this month make sure you have a designated driver.
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