Officials urge drivers to be safe during holiday

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New year’s eve is a time for celebration, and it is one of the biggest drinking holidays of the year, Louisiana State Police officials said.

Law enforcement officials are urging those who drink not to drive. It’s important to designate a sober driver, officials said.

Maj. Dustin Reynolds, with the Webster Parish Sheriff’s Office, said more deputies will be on the streets new year’s eve.

“Additional deputies will be on patrol and we will be looking for impaired drivers,” Reynolds said.
“If you plan to drink, have a designated driver or make other plans. Don’t risk hurting someone, hurting yourself or getting arrested.”

Louisiana State Police will be out new year’s eve looking for drivers who might be impaired. Public Information Officer Trooper Matt Harris said state police will be conducting checkpoints throughout the Troop G area.

“History proves this is the deadliest time of the year,” he said. “This year, our fatality numbers are up. The way to curb that is through education and enforcement efforts. Our goal will not be to arrest people but to curb behavior through enforcement efforts.”

Statistics gathered by state police show that nearly 700 people died in car crashes, with 47 percent of those alcohol-related. Harris said 53 percent of those who died in car crashes were because people were not wearing their seatbelts.

The Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over and Click It or Ticket campaigns will continue through Jan. 1, and state police will be working with local law enforcement to enforce seat belt and impaired driving laws, he said.

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