Georgia Troopers to Join Operation Zero Tolerance

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                             December 13, 2004




(ATLANTA) – The Georgia State Patrol will be joining law enforcement officers across the state during the upcoming wave of Operation Zero Tolerance.  The campaign runs from Friday, December 17 until midnight Sunday, January 2, 2005 and is aimed at reducing the number of impaired driving crashes on Georgia roads through high visibility enforcement.

During this year’s enforcement campaign, police officers, sheriffs deputies and state troopers will work together to protect everyone from impaired drivers during this busy time of the year.  The Georgia campaign is part of the national You Drink & Drive. You Lose program.

            Colonel George Ellis, GSP Commander, said state troopers will be keeping a sharp eye out for impaired drivers during their patrols now through the first of the new year.  “This is a festive time of year but also one that poses an increased danger as you travel,” he said.  “Troopers will not hesitate to lock up a drunk driver.”

Each year in Georgia more than 500 people are killed in crashes where alcohol, drugs, or a combination of the two are involved.  The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that alcohol-related fatalities rose slightly from 17,400 in 2001 to 17,419 in 2002.  An estimated 258,000 persons were injured in crashes where police reported that alcohol was present – an average of one person injured approximately every 2 minutes.

Colonel Ellis encourages careful planning for holiday activities.  “If you plan to drive, don’t drink,” he said.  “Choose a designated driver and if you see a suspected impaired driver, notify law enforcement.”