Law enforcement agencies in Pierce County are part of a statewide increase of DUI (driving Under the influence) patrols that began Dec. 13 and will continue through Dec. 31 in an effort to increase safety and keep impaired drivers off the roads during the holiday season.
With the support of the Pierce County Target Zero Task Force, the State Patrol is working with city police departments and the county's Sheriff Department, as well as the state Liquor and Cannabis Board.
More than 100 people are arrested for driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol each day in Washington between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, according to the Washington Traffic Safety Commission.
In the weekend preceding the official start of the emphasis patrols in Pierce County, more than 200 motorists were pulled over, netting 14 DUI arrests. One was for felony eluding, DUI and intent to distribute methamphetamine, officials reported.
Fatal crashes involving drivers impaired by two or more drugs or alcohol and drugs increased from 78 in 2011 to 171 last year, the Traffic Safety Commission reported.
Drivers convicted of DUI in Washington face a suspended license, a $5,000 fine and up to one year in jail.