Drive sober, or ...

Editor, Daily Union: During the busy summer travel season and throughout the year, we’re committed to making our communities and roadways as safe as possible. As part of these efforts, the Fort Atkinson Police Department will join law enforcement agencies across Wisconsin during the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign from Aug. 16 through Labor Day Sept. 2.

Officers will be working extra hours looking for reckless driving behaviors, but the goal is not to simply stop or cite motorists. The real purpose is to discourage people from ever making the dangerous and irresponsible decision to get behind the wheel impaired.

Alcohol-related crashes remain a significant concern. Every 2.5 hours in Wisconsin, someone is injured or killed in an alcohol-related crash. We continue to see problems with drugged drivers — people whose ability to safely operate a motor vehicle is compromised by illegal drugs like heroin, along with prescription or over-the-counter medications.

To help identify impaired drivers and get them off roadways, Wisconsin has 23 multi-jurisdictional OWI enforcement task forces that operate throughout the year. Nearly 5,000 Wisconsin law enforcement officers are trained in Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement.

Citizens can help in many ways. Never allow someone to drive impaired. If you see a driver that you suspect is impaired, call 911 and provide as much detail as you can. Protect yourself and your passengers by buckling up, watch your speed, be patient and alert. Thanks for your cooperation in helping us keep our streets and highways safe. — Capt. Chad Lange, Fort Atkinson Police Department.

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