Holiday Travel During “Drive Sober Or Get Pulled Over”

CHADRON – The Christmas-New Year’s travel period is underway with Triple A predicting 115.6-million travelers going at least 50 miles from home between last Friday and New Year’s Day.

This will be the 8th straight year of record-high travel volume according to Triple A, which began tracking numbers in 2000.

Nearly 91% of those travelers, some 104.8-million, will be going by car with 6% or 6.9-million flying, and the rest traveling by bus, rail, or ship. Flying is up almost 5% from last year to the highest total since 2003.

The latest edition of the national “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” anti-drunk driving campaign began back on Friday the 13th and runs through New Year’s Day.

In Nebraska, the NDOT’s Highway Safety Office is providing grants to local law enforcement agencies, including the Chadron Police Department, and the State Patrol to cover the overtime costs of putting more officers on the road.

State Patrol Superintendent Colonel John Bolduc says his troopers have been busy, removing 45 impaired drivers from Nebraska roads during the first 10 days of the campaign – arrests that “could very well have prevented a tragedy.”

Bolduc also says while troopers and other law enforcement officers “are working diligently to keep Nebraska roads safe throughout the holidays, motorists should do their part as well by driving sober.”

About a third of all fatal crashes on Nebraska roads in 2019 have involved alcohol, helping contribute to an already deadly year. As of Dec 17, the state had recorded 240 traffic deaths, 18 more than the average of the last 5 years and already more than any year since 2007 when there were 256 traffic fatalities.

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