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During a DWI checkpoint over two days last weekend, local law enforcement officers took 23 potentially deadly drivers off area roadways—that’s 23 people who could have tragically changed their lives or the lives of others forever.
Terry Randolph, a speaker at a recent regional candlelight vigil that honored and remembered those whose lives have been affected by drinking and driving, knows exactly how devastating it can be when someone foolishly decides to get behind the wheel of a vehicle after consuming alcohol.
A drunk driver killed her husband Benny on June 3, 2006.
Randolph’s story is one of far too many in Brunswick County and throughout the world. According to Daryl Jernigan, director of the Governor’s Highway Safety Program, in the past six years, more than 110,000 people have died on highways throughout the nation—that’s 110,000 people who won’t spend Christmas and other important holidays and life milestones with their families.
This time of year, officers caution, is particularly dangerous on area roads. Because of this, law enforcement officers will be out in force until after the New Year to help keep Brunswick County residents safe from drunk drivers.
As part of the holiday Booze It and Lose It campaign, there will be increased patrols and checkpoints in this and other communities.
It’s good to know there is a substantial movement in our area to help keep roads safe, but the ultimate responsibility when it comes to protecting each of us is with the decisions we make.
If you’re planning to celebrate the holiday season with alcohol, try to plan it somewhere so you don’t have to drive home afterward. If you can’t, remember to bring a trusted, designated, sober driver with you.
If you’re a host or hostess of a holiday event and alcohol will flow freely at your celebration, remember you have a responsibility to yourself and your guests to make sure no one leaves your event too incapacitated to drive.
And for those sober drivers who are out on the roads during the holiday season, remember to stay alert and drive defensively. There are a lot of potentially dangerous drivers on the roads.
Last year in Brunswick and nearby New Hanover County, state troopers issued 1,404 DWI citations—that’s 1,404 people who risked their lives and yours by getting behind the wheel under the influence.
This holiday season, don’t be one of those statistics. Be safe. Think of others. Don’t drink and drive, and let everyone get home safely for a blessed holiday season.