South Carolina Law Enforcement is beefing up patrols to keep you safe this holiday season. The "Sober or Slammer" campaign starts December 13th in an effort to prevent traffic fatalities.
According to the South Carolina Department of Public Safety, in 2012 there were 358 drunk driving related fatalities in the state. That's why troopers and local law enforcement will be on the lookout for anyone driving under the influence.
The month of December is considered one of the most dangerous times to drive. That's because a lot of people are celebrating the holidays by having a few drinks, but if you drink and drive, state troopers will find you.
"Sometimes, you may not even see the trooper. We will be driving stealth vehicles, unmarked vehicles, interstates, highways, secondary roads, back roads. A lot of people try to ride back roads, but we will have the back roads covered also," South Carolina Highway Patrol Captain Keith Grice said.
Last year, 50 people were killed on the roadways between December 14th and December 31st. Drunk driving continues to be the leading cause of fatal crashes in South Carolina, but statistics show the numbers are declining this year. Dr. Phillip Jordan owns a restaurant in Aiken and he says deputies aren't the only ones looking out for drunk drivers. His employees are as well.
"Some people can really hide it well, their drinking, being intoxicated. Others, they can't hide it. I'm sure these police officers will tell you that, but we really try to keep those people from leaving the door. We'll get them a cab and get them home safe," Jordan said.
But officers are also asking the public to help out. If you see a drunk driver on the road, remember the details of the vehicle and call 911. You could prevent a drunk driving accident, which is something that Grice has had to see first hand.
"I noticed there was a child in the middle of the roadway who was deceased. There was another occupant of the vehicle who had been ejected, he was deceased. And there was another occupant of a pickup truck, who was under his truck. Several of us tried to pick up the pick-up truck and get the guy from under it. You could hear the guy take his last breath. And what stood out most with me was the 2 year old child, because at that time, my daughter was 2 years old," Grice said.
As for Richmond County, deputies tell us that Operation Thunder will be returning to Augusta for the last part of 2013.
1336 Augusta West Parkway
Can't find something?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.