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Federal grant supports CHP efforts to curb impaired driving

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Nearly 1,000 lives are cut short in California every year at the hands of an impaired driver. In an effort to save lives and reduce the number of people who suffer injuries in alcohol-related collisions, the California Highway Patrol is engaged in a grant-funded effort called “Impaired Driving Enforcement and Apprehension (IDEA) II.”

“Our goal with this aggressive education and enforcement campaign is to deter drivers from making the poor decision to drink and drive,” said CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow. “And those who fail to heed this warning will be removed from the roadway and arrested.”

California has seen a reduction in the number of alcohol-involved collisions year after year. According to the CHP’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System, in 2009 there were 1,146 people killed in alcohol-involved collisions. The following year, there were 972 people killed, which represents a 15 percent decrease. Preliminary data for 2011 shows that encouraging downward trend is continuing.

“The majority of motorists make the responsible decision and refrain from driving under the influence,” Farrow added. “Please choose to put the lives of your family and other motorists first this holiday season.”

The IDEA II grant enables the CHP to conduct sobriety and driver’s license checkpoints, driving under the influence task force operations and deployment of proactive DUI enforcement patrol operations statewide. In addition, the CHP will educate drivers by holding local traffic safety presentations throughout California and implementing a statewide paid media campaign.

Anti-DUI efforts stemming from the yearlong grant continue through Sept. 30, 2013.

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.