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Drunken driver arrests lower this New Year’s

POSTED: January 2, 2014 12:19 a.m.

In spite of the revelry and merriment the New Year’s holiday brings for many people, Tuesday was a quiet night on the roads for the Georgia State Patrol.

There were 120 drunken driving-related arrests statewide as of 6 a.m. Wednesday morning, and only three of those came from the patrol’s Gainesville post, according to Sgt. 1st Class Chad Johnson.

The Gainesville post covers Hall, White and Banks counties.

Hall County’s traffic unit, Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic, was still collecting DUI information through Wednesday. It was working collaboratively with both GSP and the Gainesville Police Department to conduct road safety checks.

Johnson said having New Year’s Eve in the middle of the week probably helped to keep numbers lower, with many people traveling today and Friday to return home following the holiday season.

“You’d typically have higher DUI rates on your Memorial Day or Labor Day holidays,” Johnson said. “It’s just depending on where the holiday falls. If it’s attached to the weekend, then your DUI numbers tend to be a little higher.

“New Year’s is the one holiday that’s made for a party, more or less,” he added. “But it typically has been lower numbers in the past few years, just as far as drinking and driving goes, because of education and enforcement.”

Statewide, alcohol was believed to have been a factor in five fatalities.


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