The law enforcement agencies throughout the Bay area enforced much more stringent policies this past Memorial holiday weekend. The California Highway Patrol cracked down on impaired drivers and urged travelers to stay safe during the weekend. The three-day holiday was met with maximum enforcement, searching not only for DUI but also for drivers not wearing seat belts or on their cell phones.

Over the holiday weekend, the California Highway Patrol arrested 1,450 drivers statewide for DUI during the Holiday weekend last year. This year there were 104 DUI arrests made in San Diego alone. Despite this, there was an overall decrease in intoxicated drivers, falling to 1,296. Yet, there were still 31 traffic deaths.

Memorial Day weekend can be a safe celebration for everyone. It’s about making sound decisions and planning ahead before you head out on the highway,” CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow said in a prepared statement.

Several agencies in Contra Costa County conducted DUI checkpoints in El Cerrito between 7 p.m. and 3 a.m. this past Saturday, while police in Concord, Livermore and Pittsburg will held checkpoints and maintained roving anti-DUI patrols on Saturday and Sunday evening.
San Francisco police also conducted a DUI saturation patrol via motorcycle units on Friday night and a cooperative sobriety checkpoint was held in the city on Saturday night.

In Sonoma County, the Petaluma Police Department served as the lead agency for regional DUI enforcement efforts, and held a DUI and driver’s license checkpoint in Petaluma. DUI saturation patrols were also held on Saturday and Sunday night throughout the county.

According to the CHP, many deaths, even DUI crashes occur because not wearing a seatbelt. Many of those deaths could have been easily avoided by taking just one second to buckle a seat belt,” Farrow said. “Unfortunately, too many motorists still need a reminder, which is why our officers will be on the lookout for those who are not buckled up.”

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