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Press Release

Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Fact Sheet

Wednesday August 25, 2021

Background:

The Utah Department of Public Safety is hosting a Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign to encourage Utahns to always choose a sober ride. This campaign includes enforcement and education. 

  • Enforcement: Utahns can expect to see an increase in DUI enforcement from August 18th – September 6th, 2021. Over 20 Law Enforcement Agencies will be working 181 additional DUI shifts during this period.
  • The enforcement period is strategically planned during summer and Labor day. 
  • Education: This educational campaign reminds Utahns about the severe legal and life altering consequences that can result from choosing to drink and drive and to encourage them to always choose a sober ride.  Our campaign is focused on the fact that “every sip has a consequence.”

Drunk driving crashes are 100 percent preventable if individuals act responsibly… Utahns can designate a sober driver, call a cab or a sober friend, or call rideshare. If you choose to drink, don’t drive. 

The Statistics: 

  • In 2020, there were an average of 29.5 impaired-driving arrests per day. 
    • Labor Day weekend averages 180+ DUI arrests each year. 
  • In 2020, there were 61 alcohol-related fatalities on Utah roads.
  • Between 2016-2020, an average of 21% of all traffic fatalities in Utah were alcohol-related.
  • As of today,  2021 has seen 58 drug or alcohol-related fatalities.
    • 1,250 total alcohol-related crashes.
    • 648 total drug-related crashes.
  • Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) estimates that the average drunk driver will risk driving drunk more than 80 times before his/her first arrest. 
  • Over the past 10 years, drivers between the ages of 21-39 had the highest number of drunk drivers in fatal crashes with 72 percent of the DUI driving arrestees being male.

2020 Annual Stats:

Total Fatal crashes: 256

Total Fatalities: 276

Alcohol-related fatal crashes: 1,988

Alcohol-related fatalities: 61

Year-To-Date 2021 Stats (as of 08/24/2021):
Total Fatal Crashes: 172

Deaths: 195
Alcohol-related crashes: 1,250
Drug-Related crashes: 648

Drug or Alcohol-Related deaths: 58

All of the consequences of DUI can be prevented

  • Drinking and driving has so many negative consequences
    • You get arrested
    • Car gets impounded
    • Driver license gets suspended
    • Lose your job or it can be a barrier to future employment
    • Face fines and fees running into thousands of dollars
    • If you get into a crash, you could injure or kill an innocent person
  • None of this ever has to happen – every instance of drinking and driving is 100% preventable

If you see a drunk driver on the road, call 911. Some of the signs of drunk driving are: 

  • Drifting during a turn or curve
  • Inattentiveness to surroundings
  • Swerving or weaving across lanes 
  • Stopping too far, too short, too jerky, and having a slow response at traffic signals
  • Driving without headlights on at night
  • Varying speed or driving too slow (approximately 10+ mph under the speed limit)

(Source: NHTSA DWI Detection Guide)

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MEDIA CONTACT

Hillary Koellner
Director of Public Affairs
Department of Public Safety
hmkoellner@utah.gov

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