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New York plans statewide drunk driving crackdown

New York motorists may have particular reason to be aware of their alcohol consumption before getting behind the wheel between March 16 and March 18, as the state is planning a crackdown on drunk driving that coincides with St. Patrick's Day weekend. Coordinated by the New York State Police together with municipal law enforcement agencies and county sheriffs throughout the state, the police agencies announced that the STOP-DWI Crackdown is an attempt to reduce the number of injuries and deaths related to impaired driving.

The funds for the police actions on those days come from the STOP-DWI Foundation through the New York State Governor's traffic safety committee. It is one of a series of statewide drunk driving crackdowns and initiatives that are timed to coincide with holidays that are considered to be occasions for heavy drinking and large-scale partying. Similar events take place on Super Bowl weekend, the December holidays, Halloween, Labor Day weekend, the Fourth of July and Memorial Day.

Police say that their efforts aim to improve safety on the roadways by minimizing the risk of injury or death due to driving while intoxicated. In addition, they advertised slogans to promote sober driving and a mobile app called Have A Plan, designed to help people find a safe ride home after a night of drinking or partying.

Drunk driving charges in New York can have a severe impact on a person's life, even as a first offense. From criminal penalties like jail time and costly fines to administrative penalties like the loss of one's driver's license, the effects can be serious. A criminal defense attorney can often construct a strategy to counter the allegations, such as by asserting that the authorities did not have the required reasonable suspicion to make the traffic stop.

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