ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – This Thanksgiving weekend, New York State Police and local law enforcement agencies will be holding an initiative to prevent unsafe driving behaviors. This initiative is from Wednesday, November 24, through Sunday, November 28.

New York State Police Superintendent Kevin P. Bruen said“Troopers will be highly visible throughout the Thanksgiving weekend and on the lookout for impaired and reckless drivers. Please follow posted speed limits, put down your mobile phone, and make sure to slow down move over for emergency and highway maintenance vehicles. Most importantly, don’t get behind the wheel if you are impaired. Our goal is to ensure that everyone gets to their holiday celebrations safety.”

NYSP will be implementing multiple special patrols statewide that include:

  • Impaired driving patrols
  • Drug Recognition Experts
  • Fixed sobriety checkpoints
  • Underage drinking enforcement
  • Speed enforcement
  • Concealed Identity Traffic Enforcement (CITE) patrol vehicles

During the 2020 Thanksgiving holiday, troopers arrested 155 drivers for DWI, issued 4,871 speeding tickets and 228 tickets for distracted driving. Statewide, law enforcement arrested 901 people for DWI, issued 7,406 tickets for speeding and 627 tickets for distracted driving.

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

Arrested drunk and drugged drivers face the loss of their driver’s license, higher insurance rates, and dozens of unanticipated expenses from attorney fees, fines and court costs, car towing and repairs, and lost time at work.

Use these 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.