Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign underway
Beverly Bryant - August 17, 2017 10:40 am
The statewide mobilization campaign Drive Sober or Get Pulled over runs through Labor Day weekend, ending Sept. 4.
Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over focuses on law enforcement and their goal to stop drunken drivers. The campaign highlights a constant police presence searching for drunken drivers as a way of deterring people from drinking and driving.
The Ponca City Police Department, partnering with the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office and other law enforcement agencies in the state, will be concentrating their efforts to take drunken and drugged drivers off of the streets and highways. Extra officers will be on the street in Ponca City during these dates.
On an evening in late August, the Ponca City Police Department will have extra officers on patrol looking for drunken drivers. If an officer suspects a driver may be driving under the influence, a traffic stop will be initiated. Once the officer considers the person’s driving behavior, odor of alcohol and mannerisms and performance on Standardized Field Sobriety Testing, and the officer feels the driver is intoxicated and should not be operating a motor vehicle, the driver will be arrested. The driver will then be given the option of a breath test. If the driver refuses the breath test, a search warrant will be written to retrieve a blood sample to confirm the presence of any intoxicating substance.
A District Court Judge will be standing by to review the search warrant. Once the judge signs the warrant, the driver will be taken to the hospital and a blood sample taken. The blood will then be packaged and sent to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation lab for complete analysis.
Buzzed driving is drunken driving. There is no tolerance for drivers under the age of 21. If there is any measurable amount of alcohol and you were driving the vehicle, you will be arrested for DUI. Alcohol, even in small amounts, slows your reaction time and impairs your senses. You may think yourself sober after drinking only a small amount of alcohol, but studies show that even one drink can make you less alert, which will impair your ability to operate a motor vehicle.
A DUI charge is typically based on the blood alcohol content (BAC). The BAC is the measure of alcohol in a person’s bloodstream. When a police officer administers a breathalyzer test, the reading he/she sees is the measurement of the person’s BAC. You are over the legal limit if:
- You are 21 years old or over with a BAC of 0.08% or more;
- You are under 21 years old with any measurable amount of alcohol;
- You hold a CDL and have a BAC at or over 0.04%.
If you test under the 0.08% level, you can still face penalties. According to Oklahoma law, you are considered driving while impaired (DWI) if you are driving with a BAC between 0.05% and 0.08%.
The Ponca City Police Department was awarded grant funding through the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office. In 2016 there were 102 DUI arrests; so far in 2017 there have been 56.
Drinking, drugs and driving make for a deadly combination. Please don’t become a statistic.