Jefferson City Police Crackdown On DWI's

7 years 9 months 1 day ago Friday, December 17 2010 Dec 17, 2010 Friday, December 17, 2010 6:10:44 PM CST December 17, 2010 in News

JEFFERSON CITY - The Jefferson City Police Department said Friday it is cracking down on DWI's this holiday season. The police department is taking part in the nationwide "drunk driving, over the limit, under arrest" program. December is National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month. The police department has extra officers on patrol until January 3rd.

The funding for extra officers came from a grant from MoDOT's Department of Highway Safety.

"We have a grant from them that we use for overtime costs to bring in extra officers in addition to our regular staff, and those officers serve solely in the function of looking for signs of impaired driving, and then their attempts to keep those drivers off the road," said Capt. Doug Shoemaker.

Impaired drivers in Jefferson City have another way to get home instead of risking the roads.

"In 2009 alone we had 271 deaths and well over 1,000 people injured. We have been fortunate locally in that our numbers are relatively low and we attribute that to our Sober Driver program," said Shoemaker.

The Sober Driver program provides free taxi rides home for impaired people. The first ten dollars of the ride are free, but passengers are responsible for the rest.

The program is sponsored by Fechtel Beverage, who received a grant from Heineken. Fechtel Beverage expanded the program ten years ago.

"It only ran from the Thanksgiving holiday until January 1st, New Years Day, and we felt that if it was as important to try and save a life or keep somebody safe during that time period, we wanted to do what we could to offer the program year round," said owner Bernie Fechtel.

Impaired drivers can get Sober Driver tickets from restaurants and bars in downtown Jefferson City. Party hosts can also get tickets by calling Fechtel Beverage at (573) 636-5161

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