If you have not already heard, this holiday season (Thanksgiving through the end of December) in Washington there will be increased DUI emphasis patrols on the roads and highways throughout the State. Law enforcement agencies including the Washington State Patrol along with DUI officers from police departments for several local cities (including Bellevue, Issaquah, Kirkland, Redmond, Sammamish and Snoqualmie) join forces and patrol the highly frequented roadways looking for impaired holiday drivers.
The number of DUI arrests that occur during the holiday season are staggering. It was reported that there were a total of 876 DUI arrests in King County alone during this same season last year. The actual number may be close to over 1000 as it is unknown whether many Seattle DUI arrests were incuded in the 876 number as the Seattle Municipal Court has it’s own court records system. This continued effort in Washington State DUI patrols is led by the Washington Traffic Safety Commission and Target Zero Task Force. There goal is to eliminate impaired driving by 2030.
The Washington State Patrol was named by as the top law enforcement agency in North America for DUI detection and enforcement. This recognition came this past summer when their peers in the International Association of Chiefs of Police awarded them for their ”year-round efforts to detect and apprehend impaired drivers and to address impaired driving through policies, officer training, and public information and education.” Washington State Patrol Troopers make approximately 20,000 DUI arrests each year, which is about half of the total number of Washington State DUI arrests.
There are many ways to celebrate this holiday season with our family, friends and colleagues. Simply put, it is absolutely imperative to designate a sober driver. As the statitistics, task forces and international recognition demonstrate, many police officers in Washington state are extensively trained in DUI detection and enforcement. The consequences of a Washington State DUI conviction are often staggering to uninformed local drivers.
Should a person face a Washington State DUI arrest during this holiday season, they should immediately contact an attorney who regularly practices Washington State DUI defense. Attorneys at Wolff Criminal Defense are available 7 days a week and can be called directly at 425-284-2000.