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Georgia State Patrol: Don't Drink and Drive

Eight people were killed last year in Georgia traffic crashes that occurred between Christmas and New Years Day.

In 2011, eight people were killed in traffic crashes in Georgia between Christmas and New Years Day, and 401 people were arrested for driving under the influence.

There is no question that the holiday season is one of the busiest times of the year, from shopping for that perfect gift to attending countless celebrations with family, friends and co-workers. 

This year the Christmas holiday travel period started 6 p.m. on Friday and will end Tuesday night, Dec. 25.

The New Year’s holiday period begins Friday, Dec. 28 at 6 p.m. and ends Tuesday night, Jan. 1, 2013. Both holiday periods are 102-hours long.

Be safe while traveling to and from your holiday destinations.

Georgia State Troopers will be patrolling throughout the upcoming holiday periods with enforcement emphasis on impaired drivers, unrestrained drivers and passengers, and drivers exceeding the speed limit, according to Colonel Mark McDonough, Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Safety.

“Each holiday period, troopers are called to investigate traffic crashes involving serious injuries or fatalities, and these crashes could have been prevented,” he said.

State troopers, as part of Operation Zero Tolerance, Georgia’s high visibility impaired driving enforcement program, joins other state, local and county safety officials to intercept impaired drivers on Georgia roads.

Also, plan your holiday travels carefully and make sure your vehicle is ready for a long trip by checking the pressure in the tires; making sure the windshield wiper blades are not cracked; checking that all headlights, brake lights, turn signals, and tag lights are working; and checking the vehicle’s fluid levels.

“Before leaving on the trip, make sure everyone is properly restrained, take frequent rest stops along the way, and don’t speed,” said McDonough.

While it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the season, it is important for people to be responsible and to remember that consuming alcohol and driving a vehicle do not mix.

It is also important to consider the effects of over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription drugs and how these substances can also cause impairment, especially when combined with the consumption of alcoholic beverages.

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