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MEDIA RELEASE: 06/29/20
RELEASED BY: Sgt Casee Veren
Celebrate with a Plan this Holiday Weekend
The last few months have brought incredible challenges to our communities. As our nation begins to reopen, many Americans will be eager to celebrate the Fourth of July with family and friends. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Governor’s Traffic Safety Bureau (GTSB), and local law enforcement want to remind drivers to not let the celebration turn dangerous by driving impaired.
Nationally, during the 2018 July 4th holiday period (the most recent statistics available) 193 people died in motor vehicle crashes and 78 of these fatalities occurred in an alcohol-impaired crash. On the fourth of July in 2018, one person lost their life in Iowa due to an alcohol-related crash. On July 4, 2019, Iowa experienced 112 crashes which involved 2 fatalities and 9 serious injuries. These fatalities and injuries are certainly nothing to celebrate.
As of June 26, 108 people have lost their lives in traffic crashes in Iowa in 2020. Although that number is much lower than average for this time of year; total vehicle miles driven are down considerably due to COVID-19.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 71 percent of those who died in alcohol-related crashes were in vehicles involving a driver with a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of .15 or higher, almost two times the legal limit of .08. Law enforcement agencies across Iowa will be participating in the national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign from July 3 to July 7, 2020.
In an effort to combat impaired driving, law enforcement will be exhibiting zero tolerance for impaired drivers. The Marshalltown Police Department and Marshall County Sheriff’s Office will have extra officers on patrol to combat impaired driving and other dangerous driving behaviors.
There is also a financial aspect of driving impaired. An OWI arrest can cost up to $10,000. You could lose your license, your car, and your job. Before you set out to celebrate this holiday weekend, make a plan – have a designated driver, call an Uber, or other rideshare services. Impaired driving is not only dangerous but illegal, and it puts everyone on the road in jeopardy. If you see impaired or dangerous drivers, please call 911 and report it. The life you save maybe someone you know.
For additional information contact:Sgt. Casee Veren, Marshalltown Police Department
Deputy Louis Modlin, Marshall County Sheriff’s Office
Sgt. Ben Veren, Marshall County Sheriff’s Office