Police Kick Off Labor Day Weekend DUI Enforcement Blitz

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Beginning Friday night, California Highway Patrol officers will be patrolling highways and roads throughout Riverside County to catch drunken and drug-impaired drivers, as well as other traffic violators, as part of a Labor Day weekend enforcement campaign.

The CHP's "maximum enforcement period," or MEP, gets underway at 6 p.m. and concludes shortly before midnight Tuesday. According to the agency, all available officers from the Beaumont, Indio, Riverside and Temecula stations will deploy in a targeted crackdown that coincides with end-of-summer saturation patrols and sobriety checkpoints in municipalities throughout the Inland Empire.

"Too many lives are lost on our roadways every year as a result of impaired driving," said CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow. "Let's end the summer safely and remember to designate a sober driver, wear your seat belt and obey all traffic laws."

During the 2015 Labor Day weekend MEP, CHP officers statewide arrested more than 1,200 motorists on suspicion of driving under the influence. Thirty- two people died in wrecks throughout California that weekend. Seven victims were not wearing their seatbelts, according to the CHP.

Statistics provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration showed that 40 percent of crash fatalities during the 2014 Labor Day weekend involved drunken or drug-impaired drivers. This weekend's MEP deployment is part of the NHTSA's nationwide "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" campaign.

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