Be warned that from August 20 through Labor Day, September 7, the Spring Hill Police Department will join almost 150 other local and state police agencies across Kansas in a crackdown aimed at removing drunk, drugged, and other dangerous drivers from the roadways. Known as “You Drink. You Drive. You Lose.,” this enforcement effort is underwritten by a grant from the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT).
Kansas averages four persons injured every day and one person killed every three days in impairment-related crashes. According to KDOT, if you are involved in such a crash – in any capacity – you are about two times more likely to be injured and nearly six times more likely to be seriously injured or killed than if you are involved in a crash in which alcohol or other drugs are not determined to be a factor. The ratio of death to injury in impairment-related crashes is almost seven times higher than the death to injury ratio for non-impairment related crashes.
“I want the “You Drink. You Drive. You Lose.” campaign to remind drivers of several things,” Chief Richard Mann said.
“First, if you’re going to drink while away from home, do it responsibly by planning ahead and lining up someone who is not going to be drinking to get you back. Don’t make the mistake of waiting until it’s time to go home to start asking around. Chances are, if you do that, you will wind up with someone who says, ‘Sure, I’m sober!’ but who may not be.
“Second, picture families you know, and then consider how it would be to wake up every day to the memory of your decision to drive after drinking – a decision which unintentionally brought injury or death to one of them.
“Third, we can pull you over for any number of driving infractions and mechanical deficiencies. If we do and we detect a hint of alcohol, you will be tested. If you fail the test you’re looking at a fine of $500 to $2,500, up to one year in jail, the suspension - or even permanent loss - of your driver’s license, and the installation of an ignition interlock device in your car. Imagine not being able to start your car without blowing into the interlock’s alcohol sensor several times during an afternoon’s errands. Don’t take the chance - it’s not worth it.
“Fourth, we need everyone to be our eyes on the road. If you see suspicious driving behaviors, take note of location, direction, and the vehicle’s description, and call 911 as soon as it’s safe to do so. You may save a life.
“Fifth, you can count on this department to vigorously enforce impaired driving laws – not just during this campaign, but all year long.
“Finally, always remember that the best protection against a drunk driver is the use of seat belts and appropriate child restraints – every trip, every time. They save lives and reduce injury severity across the community of Spring Hill.”