CHP on alert during St. Patrick's weekend

Officers will be on the lookout for drunk drivers

St. Patrick's Day revelers be forewarned: the California Highway Patrol (CHP) said officers will be looking for anyone driving under the influence this weekend throughout the Bay Area.

"Driving under the influence is just not an option," Chief Teresa Becher of the Golden Gate Division said.

"If you sit behind the steering wheel of a vehicle and make the decision to drink excessively and drive, you are putting lives in danger. It could be your parent, a spouse, a child, a friend, whose life maybe erased in just seconds. It might be the loss of a hand, an arm, or even being paralyzed for the rest of their lives. We've seen enough, so please think of others and be responsible."

This week throughout the Bay Area the CHP is going after people they had previously arrested for DUIs and who failed to follow through with their court responsibilities, the department said. CHP officers have so far knocked on the doors of 54 people with DUI warrants and arrested 16.

"And we're not finished," Becher said. The CHP will continue to serve warrants through the week.

"If you have a warrant and don't want the CHP at your doorstep, you can turn yourself in to any CHP office or the local police or sheriff's department," the CHP said in a written statement.

The department recommends that partygoers plan ahead and designate a driver.

"If you are that designated driver, be accountable and don't drink. Your friends are counting on you to get them home safely," the CHP said.

Sue Dremann


 +   Like this comment
Posted by KP
a resident of South of Midtown
on Mar 16, 2012 at 10:51 am

I guess they better be on alert...all the green beer on a Saturday thru Saturday night!
Who wants to wager on the DUI's or DUI related accidents!
I'll drink my beer at home and listen to the sirens!

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Not-Everyone-Is-Irish-On-St.-Paddy's-Day
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 16, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Interesting that there is no historical accident data in this article. The CHP has not traditionally targeted St. Partrick's day as a high accident day, so why this year? Perhaps it is because it's on a Saturday? At any rate, St. Patrick's day is not celebrated on the West Coast like it is on the East Coast, or places like Chicago or St. Paul.

Wonder if the CHP has a little too much time on its hands this year? After all, the number of accidents have been on a downward trend for years all over California, and the US. The fatal accidents in California are down, but so are the number of miles driven over the past few years, also.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by RWC checkpoints
a resident of Menlo Park
on Mar 17, 2012 at 10:42 am

Four DUI checkpoints in Redwood City today.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by MADD
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Mar 17, 2012 at 10:54 am

Fatal accidents are down because of increased enforcement efforts like this. I with the PAPD would crack down more on dangerous driving, too. CHP only patrols state highways.

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