PUTNAMVILLE -- From today through Monday, Sept. 3, Indiana State Police troopers from the Putnamville District will join more than 250 other Indiana law enforcement agencies across the Hoosier state in the "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" crackdown on impaired and dangerous drivers.
Through Labor Day, troopers will work overtime to conduct high-visibility enforcement activities designed specifically to identify impaired drivers. Motorists will also see an increased number of patrols looking for aggressive drivers and unrestrained motorists during the Blitz 72 period.
Hoosier motorists are also encouraged to report suspected impaired drivers by calling 9-1-1.
Troopers within the Putnamville District will also be vigorously patrolling the construction zones along Interstate 70 from the Indiana/Illinois state line -- all the way across Putnam County -- to the 58-mile marker in Hendricks County, as historically work zones have produced numerous crashes caused mostly by distracted drivers. Drivers are reminded to use extreme caution with the zones.
The Indiana State Police remains committed to reduce serious injury and fatality crashes along Hoosier highways through aggressive traffic enforcement initiatives such as the current crackdown.
In addition to impaired driving, troopers will continue strict enforcement efforts on those driving behaviors those driving behaviors that are leading causation factors in crashes including unreasonable speed, driving left of center, and disregarding stop signs and automatic signal violations.
Blitz 72, Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over, is a statewide enforcement effort supported by federal funding allocated to the Indiana State Police from the Traffic Safety division of the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute (ICJI).
Last year in Indiana there were 140 fatalities and more than 2,000 injuries that were attributed to alcohol-related crashes. Impaired driving is one of the most devastating, yet preventable crimes committed in Indiana and nationwide. While impairment at any level may still be an offense, it is illegal in all 50 states to drive with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or above.
In 2011, there were 4,938 alcohol-related traffic crashes in Indiana. During the 2011 Labor Day holiday period (Sept. 2-6), there were 111 alcohol-related crashes in Indiana where a driver was impaired. During last year's Labor Day crackdown, there were 13,465 citations issued, 824 misdemeanor DUIs, and 141 felony DUIs.
"This (enforcement) effort will pull out all the stops to keep impaired drivers off the roadways through proven enforcement tactics or, if necessary, arrest," said Ryan Klitzsch, ICJI Traffic Safety Division director.
"Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" is a national campaign funded and led by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Motorists are encouraged to be well rested before travel, obey all traffic laws, drive safe and sober, and utilize seatbelts and child restraint devices.
The Putnamville District covers Putnam, Parke, Clay, Vermillion, Vigo and Sullivan counties.