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Georgia’s Campaign Against Drunk Driving Lowers Accident Rates

States like Georgia, that conduct aggressive enforcement activities against drunk driving, are more likely to see a dramatic drop in accident fatality rates. That’s according to Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, who launched the annual national crackdown on drunk driving over the holiday season.

Across the country, including in Georgia, law enforcement efforts will be stepped up to keep intoxicated motorists off the road. Each state has its own version of the annual crackdown, and this typically includes sobriety checkpoints and concentrated drunk driving patrols. The launch of the annual crackdown coincides with an announcement by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, that drunk driving accident fatalities nationwide dropped by 7 percent in 2008 compared to 2007. In Georgia, 416 people died in drunk driving crashes in 2008, compared to 445 in 2007. That was a decrease of 5 percent. This has been largely due to the effort of our law enforcement personnel, and the concentrated patrols mounted during alcohol-heavy holidays, like New Years.

The Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety’s campaign “Operation Zero Tolerance” will kick off later this month around the state. The point of having campaigns like this around the holiday season, isn’t to round up partiers and throw them in the slammer for a night, as some drunk drivers like to believe. The campaign is meant to act as a deterrent for drunk drivers. Those who drink at a venue must know that they must either call a cab, get a friend to drop them home, take public transport or sleep it off at the venue. If they decide to drive home under the influence, there is a very high likelihood they will be caught and arrested.

As Georgia auto accident attorneys, we are also impressed with the way some states have chosen to use technology to get out the “Don’t Drink and Drive” message. In Delaware, Rhode Island and Michigan, law enforcement officials are using social networking media like Twitter, to spread the message. In Washington State, the campaign includes online ads on the XBox 360 live.