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New Year's DUI Arrests Fell in Many Localities This Year



The 2012 New Year's holiday fell on a weekend, much to the pleasure and excitement of many partygoers and celebrants. But to law enforcement personnel dedicated to combating drunk-driving offenses and getting impaired drivers off of the roads, a three-day holiday weekend usually represents a big challenge. It seems more people are prone to celebrate when the holiday falls on a weekend, which eliminates the pressure of facing work the next morning with a hangover.

Still, law enforcement arrest, citation, and traffic stop statistics are in, and many localities throughout the country are reporting lower DUI arrests over the 2012 New Year's weekend. Surprised? Actually, there are several reasons behind the decline of DUI arrests.

Law Enforcement Points to Publicized Sober Rides

Some police officers experienced in years of combating drunk-driving offenses attribute this year’s decline in DUI arrests to increased public awareness and education. The public now knows about several sources of sober transportation alternatives, including the sober rides provided by AAA and by Budweiser through its “Tow To Go” campaign. The “Tow To Go” initiative offers rides to impaired drivers and also tows their cars home for them. Because of widely promoted sober ride options like these, the public is paying attention and making preparations for transportation to and from celebrations.

Police Widely Advertised More Manpower on the Roads

Law enforcement is following the lead of private industry by utilizing advertising techniques such as text messages, emails, webpages, TV commercials, news stories, and public service announcements to promote sobriety and DUI checkpoints. In many jurisdictions, local and state police combined resources and manpower to dedicate efforts to fighting drunk-driving offenses on all three nights of the New Year's holiday weekend. The police did not hide the fact that more men and women were on the ground and in patrol cars. In addition to combining resources, officer shifts were lengthened to meet the extra needs of the holiday. These efforts augmented existing campaigns and taskforces already committed to cracking down on DUIs and proved effective to reduce offenses over the long holiday season from December 16 through January 2.