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Expect DUI/DWI checkpoints across New Jersey till New Year's Day

The urge to be merry is higher this time of year than most any other. Authorities in every jurisdiction of New Jersey know this. As in previous years, the state is mounting its "Drive Sober o Get Pulled Over" campaign. Officials say the goal is to raise awareness about the dangers of driving impaired by cracking down on suspected drunk or drugged driving.

The current campaign is slated to start Dec. 9 and run through Jan. 1. It's actually a national effort, and in New Jersey, police forces in most, if not all, counties are expected to participate.

According to a spokesperson for the department in The Township of Union, various saturation patrols and sobriety checkpoints are planned. Officials say officers will be keeping an extra sharp out for the telltale signs of impaired driving - reckless actions while underway, weaving in the lane, erratic braking or unnecessary stopping, and of course car accidents.

The government has strong incentive to stay on top of this issue. Officials say that since 2011, New Jersey has recorded some 41,000 crashes in which alcohol played a role. More than 800 people died in that time. The goal, says the Union Police representative is to save lives during a period when impaired driving is greater than usual.

If police do pull you over and arrest you for suspected DUI or DWI, be prepared to contact an experienced attorney as soon as you can. To avoid the possibility of needing to do that, police offer these bits of advice.

  • If partying, take a bus, cab, ride-hailing service or have a sober friend drive you. 
  • The above tip applies even if you feel you can walk home. 
  • Lacking those options, see if you can stay at the party site for the night.

This time of year also offers an opportunity for us to watch out for each other. In that regard, if you know of someone who shouldn't be driving, don't let them get behind the wheel. 

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