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IDOT, Law Enforcement Agencies Announce Drunk-Driving Crackdown Through 4th of July Holiday

Enforcement Checks Are Designed to Curb Impaired Driving, Enhance Seat Belt Usage

CHICAGO–(ENEWSPF)–June 28, 2012.  The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), Illinois State Police (ISP) and hundreds of local law enforcement agencies around the state today reminded motorists to “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” and “Click It or Ticket” this weekend and through Independence Day.
 
The State Police and other law enforcement agencies across Illinois are participating in the annual Independence Day intensive crackdown on drunk driving and seat belt law violators. This stepped-up enforcement effort coincides with a media campaign around the holiday intended to make Illinois roadways safer, get impaired drivers off the road and increase seat belt usage, especially during the historically dangerous late night time period.

“IDOT and our law enforcement partners remain fully committed to stop impaired driving, as we urge motorists to obey all safety laws and buckle their seat belts every time they get in a vehicle, front or back seat,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Ann L. Schneider. “Our partnership with law enforcement in the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over and Click It or Ticket mobilization effectively boosts awareness, and helps ticket or immediately remove law violators from Illinois roadways. We encourage all travelers this holiday season to continue to make the right choice by buckling up, designating a sober driver and never driving while distracted.”

During the entire Independence Day crackdown, the Illinois State Police and more than 250 local law enforcement agencies across the state will conduct nearly 175 roadside safety checks and more than 500 saturation patrols looking to remove drunk drivers from Illinois roadways. In addition, more than 500 seat belt enforcement zones will be conducted, with more than half implemented at night when belt usage is typically the lowest. Illinois law requires passengers to buckle up in the front and back seat.

“Law enforcement throughout the state will saturate the roadways identifying impaired drivers, and other violators, in an effort to boost safety around the holiday,” said ISP Director Hiram Grau. “Traffic enforcement goes hand in hand with preventing violence and officers will be enforcing both to ensure Illinois motorists and citizens are safe.”
     
The mobilization, funded by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and administered by IDOT, comes as Illinois’ motor vehicle crash fatalities are up as compared to the same time period in 2011. Provisional IDOT crash data shows 449 people have died in motor vehicle crashes through June 25 of this year, as compared to 381 that were killed by crashes during the same timeframe in 2011.

In addition, last year in Illinois, 13 people were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes during the Independence Day holiday weekend (6:00 p.m. July 1 – 11:59 a.m. July 4). Of those fatalities, nine, or 69 percent, occurred in crashes that involved at least one driver or motorcycle operator who had been drinking.

To outline the consequences of impaired driving, IDOT officials and law enforcement also demonstrated what happens when an individual is arrested for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) through events at several jails in Illinois.

Here’s what happens when a DUI arrest is made:

• Once probable cause is established through field sobriety tests administered by a police officer, a driver is placed under arrest for DUI, handcuffed and taken to police headquarters.
• Once there, the driver is asked to participate in a chemical test of breath, blood or urine. If the test shows a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of 0.08 or higher, or any trace of another illegal substance or intoxicating compound, the driver is issued a sworn report notifying them that their driver’s license will be suspended for a period of six months.
• If the driver refuses the chemical test, they will have their driver’s license suspended for a 12 month period.
• Following the test or refusal, the individual is then required to post bond and is often detained in jail until bond is posted. Their vehicle may be towed, impounded or seized.

Minimum DUI Penalties
Loss of driving privileges
Minimum 6 months
Minimum 1 year
Minimum 1 year
Eligible for Monitoring Device Driving Permit allowing driving relief with Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID)
Yes
No
No
Eligible for Restricted Driving Permit
No
Yes, after 1 year and only with a BAIID
Yes, after 1 year and only with a BAIID
Jail
Up to 364 days
Up to 364 days; mandatory 5 days (or 30 days community service)
Class 2 Felony with possible 3-7 years; mandatory 90 days imprisonment depending on facts
Community Service
Up to 25 days depending on facts
30 days (or 5 days in jail)
Mandatory 25 days depending on facts
Fines
Up to $2,500
Up to $2,500
Up to $25,000
DUI Arrests in Illinois
2008
2009
2010
48,113
45,946
41,900

Resource: Illinois Secretary of State, Illinois DUI Fact Book 2012

Source: illinois.gov


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