The Ford County Sheriff's Office along with other state law enforcement agencies will be involved in the Thanksgiving Safe Arrival traffic enforcement campaign starting Monday, Nov. 25, through Sunday, Dec. 1.

According to Ford County Sheriff Bill Carr, a grant from the Kansas Department of Transportation will underwrite overtime enforcement efforts specifically aimed at removing impaired drivers from roads and ticketing vehicle occupants who are unrestrained or whose child passengers are unrestrained.

According to KDOT, the day before Thanksgiving sees more impairment-related crashes than any other day of the year with an average of three persons injured every day, and one person is killed every four days in alcohol/drug-related crashes in Kansas.

According to Carr, a DUI conviction will result in jail time, the suspension or revocation of driver’s license, a fine of $500 to $2,500, participation in an alcohol or other drug treatment program and, where alcohol is cited as a contributing factor, the purchase and installation of an ignition interlock device by the offender.

“Keep in mind that if you are going to be drinking — any amount at all — don’t even consider driving home," Carr said. "Arrange to ride with a non-drinking acquaintance.

"Don’t let pride or concerns for your convenience endanger your life and the lives of innocent others. Drivers always wear your seatbelt and don’t move the vehicle until each person riding with you is buckled in.

"This is your best defense against death and injury, it is their best defense, and it is the law. You will live with the consequences — good or bad — the rest of your life.

"By always following these simple rules, you can preserve life — maybe your life — and certainly your cash. You can safely arrive.”

Also responsible for needless death in traffic crashes is the failure to simply buckle up themselves, or to properly buckle up child passengers.

According to Carr, twice as many Kansans who die from a crash are unrestrained as are restrained.

Even worse is the fact that injuries suffered by those who are unbuckled are likely to be much more severe and disabling than injuries suffered by those who are buckled in.

This applies regardless of speed, and whether the occurrence is on a city street, a county road, or a highway.

 

To contact the writer, email vmarshall@dodgeglobe.com.