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Summer Checkpoints to Watch for Impaired Boaters and Drivers

With the Memorial Day holiday rapidly approaching, and with it, the beginning of the summer driving season, the North Carolina State Highway Patrol and the Division of Law Enforcement Wildlife Resources Commission (WRC) have announced an outreach campaign to keep drivers safe this summer.

The program, which is titled not surprisingly, “On the Road, On the Water, Don’t Drink & Drive,” is designed to remind all drivers and boaters throughout North Carolina of the dangers of drunken driving and boating.

Summer brings additional traffic to the roads of the state, as vacationers travel across the state from Cape Hetaeras to the Great Smoky Mountains, and numerous locations in between. Wilmington experiences additional traffic to the beaches nearby and traffic heading to and from Myrtle Beach and points south.

The campaign will target the big three summer holidays, Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day, as those long holiday weekends often experience an increase in traffic accidents, many alcohol-related.

North Carolina suffered more than 9,000 accidents that caused injuries and 268 fatal crashes during the summer months in 2014, and 68 of those involved alcohol. As part of the summer campaign, checkpoints will be used near-prime boating locations, and first will be set up for the Memorial Day weekend, beginning May 23 and running through May 25.

Motorists are like to see increased numbers of trooper and officers from both law enforcement agencies over these weekends and it is hoped their presence will both deter drivers and boaters from overindulging and will allow them to remove drunken drivers and boaters, to keep others safe.

Jdnews.com, “State Highway Patrol and Wildlife Resources Commission Announces Multi-Agency Initiative,” N.C. Department of Public Safety, May 14, 2015