ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) – The Minnesota Department of Public Safety announced Thursday that it will crack down on drinking and driving during the month of December.
The move comes as no surprise with holiday parties coming up as well as New Year’s Eve. DPS officials said law enforcement agencies will add DWI patrols statewide as December has been a peak month for alcohol-related crashes the last three years.
The Minnesota State Patrol is partnering with DPS to offer 8,500 extra hours of DWI patrols on Minnesota roads.
In December 2009, 2009 and 2010 there were a combined 1,097 alcohol-related crashes, including 24 fatal crashes.
DPS officials urge motorists that if they plan on drinking, plan a sober ride or take public transportation to get home. Motorists are also urged to call 911 if they see evidence of impaired drivers on the road.
There have been 313 traffic-related deaths this year, compared to 369 at this time last year. The main message is to drive carefully on Minnesota roads throughout the holiday season.