Law enforcement to step up patrols, sobriety check points - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

Law enforcement to step up patrols, sobriety check points

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ALBANY, N.Y. – Thanksgiving eve is the biggest travel day of the year, but also one of the biggest party nights, and law enforcement will be stepping up patrols to help keep drivers safe.

Law enforcement across the state are planning to have sobriety check points and increase the number of officers on the streets, to catch anyone out drinking and driving.

"During the holiday season with thanksgiving kicking it off, it's a time of celebration for families; friends to gather have a good time. Our job out here is just to ensure that everybody is having a good time, gets to and from where they're at without getting hurt," said Sgt. Martin Zaloga with the Albany County Sheriff Department.

Police NEWS10 ABC spoke with say they're not opposed to people having a good time, it's the holiday season, but they encourage people that if they are going to drink, they don't get behind the wheel.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says nearly 360 people were killed last year because of alcohol related crashes.

Sgt. Zaloga checked for the signs of impaired driving, and said that doesn't always mean looking for a vehicle that crosses over the yellow line. He's looking for headlights out, loud mufflers. 

"Whether it be fail to signal for a turn, failure to dim their high beams," he explained.

Their goal is to stop any holiday tragedies. Zaloga hopes people think twice before getting behind the wheel after drinking.

"It's definitely not worth it, for the price of a cab, it's far less than the price of taking a life or even the price of an accident or a DWI arrest," he added.

Safe rides will be available for those who aren't able to safely drive home. The Albany County STOP-DWI Thanksgiving Eve "Safe Ride Program" will be available in the county beginning at 10:00 p.m. on Wednesday November 27th until 2:00 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning.

The program provides rides home, free of charge, to individuals who have been drinking and should not be driving. Anyone that has been drinking within the Capital District may call 1800LAW1010 and mobile users may also call **LAW (**529) to request a free ride home.

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