File photo

File photo

This holiday season law enforcement officers are warning people to not drink and drive as they will be out in force starting Friday through Jan. 1, according to a news release from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

The Avoid the 100 DUI Task Force will be aggressively looking for drunk drivers, with plans in place for 66 DUI checkpoints, 201 local roving DUI saturation patrols, several multi-agency strike teams, 14 DUI warrant/probation sweeps and two DUI court stings targeting suspended drivers who were ordered by a judge not to get behind the wheel of a vehicle.

Data shows that the holiday season is a particularly deadly time due to the increased number of drunk drivers on the roads, officials said.

“Our task force will be highly visible during this enforcement period and those suspected of driving while intoxicated will be shown zero tolerance if they are over the limit,” said Glendora Police Chief Rob Castro.

Nationally in the five years from 2007 to 2011, there were 4,169 people killed during the month of December in crashes that involved drivers with blood alcohol concentrations of .08 percent or higher.

In California during those same five Decembers, 505 were killed and thousands seriously injured, officials said.

Drunk drivers often face jail time, the loss of their driver’s licenses, higher insurance rates, and dozens of other unanticipated expenses ranging from attorney fees, court costs, car towing and repairs, to lost wages due to time off from work. Even worse, a drunk driver can cause a traffic crash that claims someone’s life, or their own.

Officials recommend calling a taxi or having a sober family member or friend drive you home if you have had even one drink. If you see an impaired driver on the road call 911 and never let someone you know who is drinking get behind the wheel.

Avoid the 100 DUI Task Force funding is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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