SOUTH CAROLINA (WJBF) – As the holidays are predicted to bring heavy traffic on the roadways, the South Carolina Department of Public Safety (SCDPS) is doing its part to make sure everyone travels safely.

The SCDPS, along with state transport police officers and local law enforcement agencies, state they will be cracking down on impaired driving with the kickoff of the Sober or Slammer holiday campaign.

Authorities say the campaign will run through New Year’s Day along with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Driver Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign.

According to SCDPS, there were a total of 930 collisions during the 2021 Christmas holiday period, resulting in 13 deaths on South Carolina roadways, and as of December 19th of 2022, there have been 1,015 traffic deaths, compared to 1,152 at this time in 2021.

“The message here is simple – the decision to drive after drinking has the potential to negatively and permanently impact your life, as well as the lives of your family members and other motorists,” says Robert G. Woods, IV, Director of the South Carolina Department of Public Safety. “Our troopers and officers will be working with local law enforcement to help ensure that everyone can travel safely and enjoy the holiday season with friends and family.” 

“Drivers can expect to see extra enforcement efforts on South Carolina roadways during the holidays to help reduce the number of impaired drivers,” says Colonel Christopher Williamson, Commander of the SC Highway Patrol. “If you plan to attend a holiday event and alcohol is part of the celebration, designate a sober driver. It’s never okay to drink and drive.”  

The South Carolina Department of Public Safety offers these safety tips to ensure a safe ride home: 

  • Designate a sober driver before getting on the road; 
  • Call a taxi or rideshare service; 
  • Use public transportation, if available.