[ The Real McCoy Online Home ]                                                                                                                    August 14, 2009
Armywide News

DES to join in drunk driving prevention campaign for Labor Day

MADISON, Wis. (State of Wisconsin Department of Transportation) — To combat the deadly dangers of drunken driving, police officers from the Fort McCoy Directorate of Emergency Services (DES) will be out in force to arrest impaired motorists as part of a nationwide law enforcement crackdown from Friday, Aug. 21 through Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 7.

The "Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest" crackdown will combine stringent law enforcement with a federally funded media campaign to deter impaired driving.

Drunken driving devastates individuals, families and whole communities, according to statistics compiled by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. Last year, alcohol-related crashes in Wisconsin killed 234 people and injured 4,319. Approximately 37,000 drivers — a number nearly equal to the population of Beloit — were convicted of drunken driving in Wisconsin in 2008.

This year, deaths from motorcycle crashes are increasing compared with last year, and approximately 47 percent of all fatal motorcycle crashes in Wisconsin are alcohol-related.

Randy Eddy, Fort McCoy Safety Officer, said all personnel riding motorcycles at Fort McCoy must pass a certified motorcycle safety course, such as the Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) courses for beginning and experienced riders. MSF courses are held regularly at Fort McCoy by Ride Safe Inc., and are free for authorized military personnel and Department of Defense civilians. For more information, visit the Web site http://www.ridesafewi.com and click on the Fort McCoy location and schedule or call 715-299-7728.

Sgt. Domenic Modica, Fort McCoy DES Traffic Safety officer, said, "Drunken driving is too prevalent and too deadly to ignore. That’s why we don’t give warnings or accept excuses for drunken driving. If you’re over the limit, you’ll be arrested. The decision to drive while impaired will likely be one you’ll regret the rest of your life, if you’re lucky enough to live. During the upcoming crackdown and throughout the rest of the year, our goal is not to arrest more drunken drivers. We simply are trying to save lives and prevent injuries. If we can deter people from getting behind the wheel when they’re impaired, we will make progress toward the goal of reducing the number of preventable traffic deaths to zero in Wisconsin."

In addition to the campaign, Fort McCoy DES personnel will continue to hold random compliance checks for traffic safety matters, such as mandatory seat-belt usage, restrictions on cell-phone usage (cell phones cannot be used by drivers when the vehicle is in motion unless they are hands-free models), speeding, etc., Modica said. For more information about traffic safety in the Fort McCoy community, call 608-388-2044.

Instead of risking an arrest for impaired driving, the Fort McCoy DES offers the following suggestions:

  • Choose a sober designated driver before you start to drink.

  • If you’re feeling buzzed, you probably are over the 0.08 (alcohol concentration) limit and should not drive.

  • Rather than drive while impaired, take mass transit, a taxicab or ask a sober friend to drive you home.

  • Some taverns and restaurants have programs to provide patrons with a safe ride home. (In Wisconsin, visit http://www.tlw.org and click on Safe Ride for more information.)

 

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