Whitesburg KY

Drive safe and sober over the Fourth of July holiday

To the Editor:

I am writing to encourage your readers to have a safe and sober Fourth of July holiday weekend when driving on Kentucky roadways. A new report recently came out that shows 1 in every 4 people will be involved in a traffic collision. Last year in Kentucky, 913 lives were lost on our roadways.

Nationally, the Fourth of July holiday period was the deadliest holiday period of the year in 2006 – due to impaired driving.

In Kentucky, last year, there were 1,160 collisions during the Fourth of July holiday period. Of that figure, there were 494 people injured and 16 fatalities.

As a 22-year veteran with Kentucky State Police, I have witnessed many heartbreaking incidents caused from motorists driving under the influence causing or becoming a fatality. KSP troopers have knocked on many doors in the middle of the night to advise someone that a loved one has been killed in a crash. The sad fact of these and many other highway fatalities is that they could have been prevented – through sober driving and buckling up. In our Commonwealth, only 62 percent of Kentuckians wear their seat belts. I recently received a letter from a parent who went to her son’s graduation only to see a memorial cap and gown sitting where he should have been.

That why Kentucky State Police and local law enforcement officials will be out in full force cracking down on drunk drivers during the Fourth of July holiday period with an aggressive enforcement blitz called “Blue Lights Across the Bluegrass: Drunk Driving – No Excuses. No Exceptions.” We will have sobriety checkpoints, saturation patrols, and heightened enforcement activities to show zero tolerance for anyone who is caught driving impaired or not wearing a seat belt.

Please remember, no matter what you drive – a passenger car, pickup, or motorcycle – if you are caught driving impaired, you will be arrested. Don’t let this Fourth of July blow up in your face. Remember. Drunk driving. Over the limit. Under arrest.

If you suspect someone of driving impaired, you can call a toll-free hotline to report the incident at 1-800-222-5555. Please drive, safe, sober and buckle your seat belts!

CAPTAIN TIM LUCAS Kentucky State Police Headquarters Highway Safety Office Frankfort

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