On Tuesday morning, Aug. 20, Fairfax County Police Chief Colonel Edwin C. Roessler Jr., Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles Director of Highway Safety John Saunders and Virginia-based Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP) President Kurt Erickson launched the annual statewide anti-drunk driving Checkpoint Strikeforce Campaign.
The DUI law enforcement and public education campaign continues through Labor Day weekend and will resume during Halloween and the holidays.
Fairfax County Statistics: To date in 2019, there have been 209 alcohol-involved crashes resulting in eight fatalities and 106 injuries. Of the eight alcohol-involved fatalities, three involved impaired pedestrians and five were caused by intoxicated drivers.
In 2018, there were 362 alcohol-involved crashes resulting in 12 fatalities and 181 injuries. Of the 12 alcohol-involved fatalities, four were the result of impaired pedestrians and eight were caused by intoxicated drivers. There were also three fatalities resulting from drivers impaired by drugs.
Working on a Solution to Save Lives: Since it began in 2017, the DWI Enforcement Squad has played a significant role in reducing alcohol-involved crashes in our county. In 2016, the year before the squad was deployed, we responded to and investigated 501 alcohol-involved crashes. In 2017, that number dropped 19.5 percent to 403 alcohol crashes, and in 2018, it dropped another 10.1 percent to 362 alcohol-involved crashes. Overall from 2016 to 2018, there was a 27.7 percent decrease in alcohol-involved crashes investigated by FCPD officers.
What You Can Do:
Don’t drink and drive.
Plan ahead. If you are planning to drink, arrange for a designated driver, use a ride sharing company, or take a taxi.
If you are with someone who has been drinking, do not let them drive and try to arrange a sober ride for them.
If you are hosting a party where alcohol will be served, ensure that your guests leave with a sober driver.
While on the road, report any suspected impaired drivers by calling 9-1-1 or non-emergency dispatch at 703-691-2131.
Communication is important. Parents should talk to their children about the dangers of impaired driving.