The Clay County Sheriff's Department will participate in a statewide Safe Family Travel traffic safety enforcement blitz leading up to the holiday season. The enforcement campaign, which also includes media outreach, will use federal funding to put additional officers on the roads to enforce Indiana's impaired driving and seat belt laws.
The two-week enforcement blitz and corresponding media flight each begin on Sunday, Nov. 11 and conclude on Saturday, Nov. 24. The goal of this high-visibility enforcement blitz is to deter impaired and dangerous driving behavior that compromise safety on Indiana's roadways during this heavily traveled season.
"Thanksgiving is one of the busiest times on Indiana highways and we want to encourage all Hoosiers to make smart and safe decision," Coordinator Sgt. Jason Frazier said. "If you buckle up and drive responsibly while traveling this holiday season, chances are, you'll arrive alive."
In 2006, between Thanksgiving and New Years, 87 people died in alcohol-related crashes or in crashes where safety belts were not used, according to the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute (ICJI). Of those killed in alcohol-related crashes, nearly 50 percent were unrestrained.
Law enforcement officers will deploy special patrols designed to detect impaired drivers and will also be on the lookout for motorists and passengers, including children, who are not buckled up. Anyone caught driving without a seatbelt or transporting children, who are not properly restrained, will be cited. Anyone caught driving under the influence with an illegal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher will be arrested.
"The Indiana Criminal Justice Institute would like to thank the Clay County Sheriff's Department for taking part in this program," ICJI Executive Director Mike Cunegin said.
"Many communities throughout Indiana are safer as a result of the high-visibility enforcement conducted by over 250 law enforcement agencies throughout the state.
Drivers should buckle up, obey posted speed limits and drive sober to prevent unnecessary fatalities and injuries that may otherwise occur on Indiana roads and highways."
The Governor's Council on Impaired and Dangerous Driving, a division of ICJI, sponsors the Safe Family Travel campaign. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) provides Federal funding for the initiative