downloadWith the holidays upon us, friends, family and coworkers are coming together to celebrate, and BNPD is partnering with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to help spread the message about the dangers of drunk and drugged driving. The “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign will take place Dec. 13-31, during which time local law enforcement will place emphasis on removing impaired drivers from the roadways.

BNPD Captain Kevin Russell said the campaign is a way for the department to further protect the residents of Benton.

“It’s essential that our community members understand the safety and financial risks of drinking and driving, along with other types of impaired driving,” he said. Under no circumstances is it ever acceptable to get behind the wheel of a vehicle after you’ve been drinking or doing drugs. Doing so endangers you and everyone on the road with you.”

According to NHTSA, 10,874 people were killed in drunk-driving crashes in 2017, equating to one person killed every 48 minutes. On average, 10,000 people were killed in drunk-driving crashes each year from 2013 to 2017—the equivalent of 20 jumbo jets crashing each year with no survivors. In December 2017 alone, 885 people lost their lies in traffic crashes involving a drunk driver. Statistics show that drug-impaired driving is also an increasing problem on our nation’s roads.

“This is why BNPD is working with NHTSA to remind drivers that drunk and drugged driving is not just illegal. It’s a matter of life and death,” said Russell. “Driving while impaired by any substance will always have ramifications, both legal and otherwise.”

As such, BNPD is emphasizing the need to secure a sober way home from your festivities by planning ahead with the following tips in mind:

  • Remember it’s never okay to drive impaired. Even if you’ve had only one alcoholic beverage, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation or ride service to get home safely.
  • Download NHTSA’s SaferRide mobile app, available on Google Play and iTunes, which allows users to call a taxi or a predetermined friend, and identifies the user’s location so he or she can be picked up.
  • If you see a drunk driver on the road, call 911.
  • Take the keys away from a friend who is about to drive impaired and make arrangements to get them home safely.

“We understand that during the holidays, people are running around busily checking off items on their

to-do lists and attending parties,” said Russell. “We need our community members to slow down and remember It’s up to them to make the decision to drive sober during the holidays and all year long. “

For more information about the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign and impaired driving, visit