Major Ernesto Duarte
Florida Highway Patrol
For Release August 31, 2006:
Tallahassee – The Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) will be out in force during the Labor Day holiday weekend, which begins at 00:01 hours Friday, September 1, 2006, and concludes at midnight, Monday, September 4, 2006. The FHP will also be participating in the National Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest. Labor Day enforcement crackdown, which began Friday, August 18, and concludes Monday, September 4, 2006.
Impaired driving fatalities are on the rise in Florida. According to the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, 1,239 people were killed in alcohol-related crashes during 2005. This was a 13.4% increase over 2004. “Each year, thousands of lives are cut short or changed forever in alcohol-related crashes. Families and friends are left behind to cope with the loss of a loved one killed by an impaired driver who chose to drink and drive,” said Colonel Knight. In effort to prevent such tragedies, Florida troopers will be conducting enhanced patrols throughout the state during the Labor Day holiday driving period.
During last year’s 96-hour Labor Day holiday, 44 people were killed in traffic crashes in Florida: 40% of those drivers and passengers who were killed in vehicles normally equipped with safety belts were not using them; also, 49% of the fatal traffic crashes were alcohol-related. Drivers arrested for D.U.I. in Florida face: license suspension or revocation; having their vehicles impounded or confiscated; increased penalties such as fines and/or jail time, higher insurance rates; and the stigma of being arrested for D.U.I.
Motorists are again encouraged to call *FHP (*347) on their cellular phone to report drunk, aggressive, or other dangerous drivers. Callers can remain anonymous. Motorists who experience car trouble on the highway or otherwise need assistance from the FHP are also encouraged to use *FHP.
2005 LABOR DAY HOLIDAY TRAFFIC FATALITIES