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Officers on the lookout for drunk drivers

POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI) — As Idahoans hit the road this summer, the Pocatello Police Department is joining law enforcement agencies across Idaho to keep roads free from impaired driving.

Now through July 9, officers will dedicate patrols to looking for drivers under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

This is part of a statewide effort involving officers from more than 50 law enforcement agencies. The primary goal of the law enforcement presence will be to prevent the tragedies previously seen around the July 4th holiday.

“Impaired driving is one of the most dangerous and deadly behaviors we see on our roads,” Chief Roger Schei said. “We want people to enjoy the Fourth and we are going to do everything we can to help people get home safely.”

According to data from the Idaho Transportation Department’s Office of Highway Safety, nearly 40 percent of all fatal crashes in Idaho involve some sort of driver impairment. Between 2017 and 2021, 453 people were killed in impaired driving crashes in Idaho – including 104* people who were killed in 2021.

“Impaired driving is a problem that affects all of us. It’s going to take all of us working together to stop impaired driving,” Chief Roger Schei said.

While additional officers will be on the lookout for impaired drivers, we can all do our part to keep Idaho’s roads safe. Celebrate with a plan and remember these safe alternatives:

  • Plan ahead. Before you drink, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation or a ride service to get home safely.
  • Speak up. Do you have a friend who is about to drink and drive? Take the keys away and make arrangements to get your friend home safely. 
  • Call the Police. If you see a suspected impaired driver use your cell phone in hands-free mode to call 208-234-6100, 911, or *ISP (that's STAR, I-S-P for Idaho State Police) or 1-800-233-1212.
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