Law enforcement cracking down on unsafe Thanksgiving driving statewide


ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — New York State Police and local law enforcement agencies statewide will be cracking down on unsafe driving during the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. The initiative starts November 25 and will run through November 29.

“While we expect lower traffic volumes this year due to New Yorkers taking COVID-19 precautions and limiting large gatherings, we must still ensure that those who do travel, get to their destination safely,” Governor Cuomo said. “State Troopers and local law enforcement will be out in force working to prevent needless crashes caused by those who get behind the wheel while impaired. I urge drivers to follow the law and make safety your top priority while out on the roads”

State Police will implement fixed sobriety checkpoints, underage drinking enforcement, and the Operation Hang Up” initiative, targeting drivers by using Concealed Identity Traffic Enforcement (CITE) patrol vehicles to better spot drivers texting or using electronic devices.

Traffic generally tends to pick up during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend as well as increased alcohol consumption. It is reported that during the 2019 holiday period, troopers arrested 212 drivers for DWI, issued 5,168 speeding tickets, and 634 tickets for distracted driving.

The Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee and its partners will be participating in a nationwide social media blitz to discourage impaired driving using the hashtag #BoycottBlackoutWednesday.

“Throughout the Thanksgiving weekend, Troopers will be highly visible and on the lookout for impaired and reckless drivers. Make safety your top priority – follow posted speed limits, make sure everyone is buckled up, put down your smart phones, and don’t get behind the wheel if you are impaired. Planning ahead for a safe ride home is always the best choice, said Superintendent Keith M. Corlett.

“It is up to all of us to prevent impaired driving tragedies this holiday season, so I urge everyone to do your part to make sure our roads are safe. Be responsible, have a plan, and don’t let loved ones drive drunk or drugged, and together we can protect everyone on the roads. It’s that simple,” said GTSC Chair and DMV Commissioner Mark J. F. Schroeder.

The New York State Police, GTSC and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommend these simple tips to prevent impaired driving:

  • Plan a safe way home before the fun begins
  • Before drinking, designate a sober driver
  • If you’re impaired, use a taxi or ride sharing service, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation
  • Use your community’s sober ride program
  • If you suspect a driver is drunk or impaired on the road, don’t hesitate to contact local law enforcement
  • If you know someone who is about to drive or ride while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely

The Thanksgiving impaired driving enforcement initiative is funded by the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee (GTSC). The GTSC and the New York State STOP-DWI Foundation remind motorists that their “Have a Plan” mobile app, is available for Apple, Android and Windows smartphones.


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