BOISE, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK)-Idaho State Police has launched emphasis patrols across the state Monday aimed at reducing the number of impaired and unsafe drivers on the road.
Specially trained Drug Recognition Experts (DRE) will be working through the holidays to identify impaired drivers. The certified experts are capable of gathering evidence to substantiate any drug impairment charges resulting from DUI or drug investigations.
"The holiday season should be a time of year when people can spend time with family and friends. We want to keep our roadways safe so everyone can enjoy the holidays," said Major Gardiner of the Idaho State Police. "We're working to stop impaired driving crashes from affecting any more Idaho families."
In December 2018, 800 people lost their lives in traffic crashes involving impaired drivers.
In addition, ISP said 33% of all fatalities in 2018 were the result of an impaired driving crash. Statistics show that 6% of all Idaho crashes involve an impaired driver and that impaired driving arrests increased by 8% over 2017.
Drivers aged 18-39 are most likely to be involved in an impaired driving crash and those crashes cost drivers almost $1 billion annually.
"Crashes caused by impaired drivers are 100% preventable," said Major Gardiner. "Driving impaired by any substance, drugs, or alcohol, is illegal and can be deadly. There's no excuse for people to choose to drive impaired. It's not worth the risk to yourself or others."
The impaired driving patrols will continue through New Year's Day. If you see an impaired driver on the road, call ISP at *477 from any cell phone.