Authorities Up DUI Patrols for the Holiday
KREX News Room
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.- As you're enjoying time with family and friends during the Thanksgiving holiday, authorities are warning folks to remember to be smart when drinking.
Grand Junction Police have announced that they will have a DUI checkpoint somewhere in Mesa County Friday night.
Grand Junction Police officials and other authorities will be out in full force the next couple of days, and cracking down on those driving under the influence.
“We usually have a slight increase in DUIs due to all the holiday parties around town,” said Myles Shiflet of the Grand Junction Police Department.
“There's permission to drink, there is pressure to drink, and it's a holiday so a lot of people who would not be drinking indulge in alcohol,” said Steven Landman, licensed alcohol therapist at the Family Counseling Center.
According to officials, over thanksgiving week last year, heavy DUI enforcement across the state caught 435 drivers suspected of drinking and driving, with eight in Grand Junction.
“We do have DUI checkpoints just randomly around town,” said Shiflet. “Not necessarily just on a Friday or Saturday.”
As police enforcement add extra officers to the area, Landman is also advising those of the costly consequences of DUIs.
“A DUI could cost you thousands of dollars,” said Landman. “It also depends on whether or not you hire a lawyer or if your job depends on driving.”
Landman works with those arrested for crimes like DUIs, and says the most common response he hears is, “I didn't think I was too drunk to drive.”
“So think about it,” said Landman. “The brain that is making the decision is an impaired brain. If my brain is impaired it would be sort of logical that I would make a bad decision.”
But police officials say the best decision to make is to have a designated driver.
“Why are you putting yourself in that position,” said Shiflet. “You need to make a plan, stick to it and get a designated driver. That’s plain and simple, it's not hard.”
Until Monday, Colorado State Patrol and the Colorado Department of Transportation will join forces with Mothers Against Drunk Driving to crackdown on those driving under the influence, during their Thanksgiving “Heat is On.”
Recently, 570 arrests across the state were made during the Halloween "Heat is On" campaign.