POSTED: Friday, August 16, 2013 - 5:40pm
UPDATED: Friday, August 16, 2013 - 5:50pm
BATON ROUGE, LA (NBC33) — Labor Day is right around the corner, and State Police are starting early by targeting drunk drivers harder than ever to help save lives. Beginning Friday, you will see more State Troopers and DWI checkpoints on Louisiana roadways as part of the annual "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" campaign.
In Louisiana, reports indicate a DWI can cost up to $1,000 in fines, court and legal fees, and other expenses. A DWI on your record can get your license suspended and can make it harder for you to get a job. That's why State Trooper Jared Sandifer said think before you drink and drive.
"We will have enforcement around the area. We will be conducting sobriety checkpoints in an effort to combat these impaired drivers," Sandifer said. "We do see crashes involving impaired drivers and as state troopers, that's something that we see far too often."
Floyd Johnson with Mothers Against Drunk Driving said the campaign is necessary.
"We realize that especially around the holidays more people drink especially with the days off," Johnson said. "We would love to make sure that people take precautions ahead of time and not drink and drive."
Johnson helps victims of drunk driving accidents try to heal and helps MADD create awareness of how dangerous drunk driving can be.
"Just hearing some of the stories our victims have gone through, and the years of dealing with not only the crash and the loss of their loved one, but but also the years of the court and the pain and anguish that they go through," Johnson said. "There a victims who've crashes happened 20 or 30 years ago, and they say it's every day. They feel that loss every day."
"We just urge drivers to be careful out there and to designate a driver and always have a plan," Sandifer said.
Just last year, statistics said 40 percent of fatal crashes in Louisiana were alcohol-related. The "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" camaign will run until September 2, 2013.