is cracking down on impaired driving as part of a national campaign stretching into Labor Day.
Woburn, along with 128 other Massachusetts departments, will conduct an "intensive crackdown on impaired driving" between Aug. 15 and Sept. 3 as part of the "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" campaign.
Impaired driving includes operating a vehicle "under the influence of intoxicating liquor, or of marijuana, narcotic drugs, depressants or stimulant substances," according to Mass General Law.
“Our message is simple and unwavering: if we find you driving impaired, we will arrest you. No exceptions,” said Police Lt. Chris Wackrow.
According to police, impaired driving is one of the most committed and deadliest crimes. In 2010, there were 115 reported deaths; 2,750 personal injury or property damage crashes; and over 14,000 arrests due to impaired driving.
Authorities average that there is one alcohol-related fatality every 51 minutes in the U.S.
"All too often, innocent, law-abiding people suffer tragic consequences and the loss of loved ones due to this careless disregard for human life," said Lt. Wackrow. "Because we’re committed to highway safety, we are intensifying enforcement during the crackdown."
The lieutenant said that Woburn Police will be "especially vigilant" on weekends and at nighttime, since many alcohol-related crashes occur during those time periods.
But, police warn that impaired drivers will be arrested, no matter the time of day.
“Even if you beat the odds and manage to walk away from an impaired-driving crash alive, the trauma and financial costs of a crash or an arrest for driving while impaired can still destroy your life,” said Lt. Wackrow, adding that a first offense can cost the driver at least $5,000 in associated costs, including insurance rates.
According to the Registry of Motor Vehicles, impaired-driving violators will often see jail time, lose their driver's licenses, or be forced to use "ignition interlocks."
Woburn Police's Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign will run from today (Aug. 15) until Labor Day (Sept. 3). Woburn's participation in the national campaign is funded through a federal grant from the Executive Officer of Public Safety and Security's Highway Safety Division.