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"You Drink & Drive, Your Lose" Campaign

Date of News Release: 8/27/2004

(FRANKFORT, Ky.) - The Kentucky State Police Governor's Highway Safety Program advises motorists throughout the Commonwealth that extra enforcement efforts targeting impaired drivers will begin Aug. 27 and continue through Sept. 12. As part of the nationwide "You Drink & Drive. You Lose" traffic enforcement campaign, law enforcement agencies across the state will maximize their presence on the state's roadways through extra personnel and duty hours, saturation patrols and traffic safety checkpoints designed to catch impaired drivers and lock them up.

"Unfortunately, many law-abiding citizens continue to view impaired driving merely as a traffic offense," says KSP Commissioner Mark Miller. "Impaired driving is no accident nor is it a victimless crime. It is one of the most frequently committed violent crimes. Every 30 minutes, nearly 50 times a day, someone dies in an alcohol-related crash."

The "You Drink & Drive. You Lose" campaign began in 1999 and is funded by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA). It combines highly visible law enforcement activities with a $14 million national advertising program aimed at 21- to 34-year old males. Research identifies this group as the most likely to drive impaired.

NHTSA estimates that 17,401 people were killed in alcohol-related crashes in 2003. Research shows that three out of four Americans strongly endorse the use of strict and severe penalties against impaired drivers to protect themselves and their loved ones.

As a result, KSP will follow a zero tolerance policy regarding impaired drivers. "There will be no second chances," notes Capt. Brad Bates, commander of the KSP Community Relations Branch. "If a motorist has a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or above, they will be arrested, booked, fingerprinted and jailed. They'll face an expensive and time-consuming process of arranging bail, finding a lawyer, appearing in court, paying fines and court costs and a possibility of losing their license or serving a sentence."

"The message is simple," he adds. "If you drive impaired, you will be arrested. It's not worth the consequences."

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