Santa Rosa police to hold DUI crackdown at intersection near Santa Rosa Junior College

Every year after the last vacation before Labor Day when students return to their schools, travelling on roads becomes dangerous for people.

According to Petaluma Traffic Sergeant Ken Savano, as the number of vehicles increases on the roads, the number of crashes also increase. The months of August and September are included in the list of top 5 months in which too many accidents are caused every year. Due to this reason, Petaluma police will be out on roads during the next 2 weeks. Petaluma police will work as part of a multi-agency DUI crackdown and also for Petaluma’s Safe Routes to School Plan which will begin on 20th of August. Santa Rosa police will move their extra enforcement efforts to a dangerous intersection which is near Santa Rosa Junior College, next week.

DUI crackdown

As part of the national “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign, police officers from 13 Sonoma County agencies will be on duty between the time period of 16th of August and Labor Day. They will look for drivers driving under the influence and will try to make the roads safe for travelling.

Petaluma Police Chief Patrick Williams said that the DUI Task Force will take intoxicated drivers into custody. Setting up 4 DUI/drivers license checkpoints are planned and other than that, local roving DUI saturation patrols, a DUI warrant/probation sweep and 2 DUI court stings are planned for drivers whose driver’s license was suspended and who were ordered by the judge not to drive a motor vehicle.

Williams said, “Every year, about one third of all motor vehicle traffic deaths involve one or more drunk drivers or motorcycle operators. If you do choose to drive impaired, you will be arrested. No warnings. No excuses”.

Director of the California Office of Traffic Safety, Chris Murphy said, “Research has shown that high-visibility enforcement like the ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ campaign reduces drunk driving fatalities by as much as 20 percent”.

The California Office of Traffic Safety has given a grant for the campaign through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Police departments from Cloverdale, Cotati, Healdsburg, Petaluma, Rohnert Park, Santa Rosa, Sebastopol, Sonoma, Windsor, Sonoma State University and Santa Rosa Junior College, along with the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department, Sonoma County Probation Department, ABC, MADD, the California Highway Patrol and State Parks are included in the agencies that participated in the campaign.

Petaluma school patrols

As students return for their fall semester, Petaluma officers will also remain around the schools for their security from 20th of August.

Lt. Tim Lyons of the Petaluma Police Department said, “We respectfully ask parents, school faculty and students to walk, ride, drive and park like they are doing the same in their own neighborhoods for the safety of our children in school zones”.

To enforce traffic rules, officers will remain on-duty for the safety of bicycles and pedestrians. Police officers will also provide bike helmets at the Police Department, 969 Petaluma Blvd. N., to anyone under the age of 18 years.

Santa Rosa’s dangerous intersection

Santa Rosa police will keep a check on one of the city’s most collision-prone intersections, Mendocino Avenue at Pacific Avenue on the week of 19th of August. This place was on the 3rd number in the list of places where most crashes occurred. 10 accidents happened there last year.

According to officer Jeff Adams, as part of a weekly Monday through Friday special enforcement program, police officers will be looking for drivers not wearing seat belts, using cell phones while driving, driving at high speed, running red lights or committing lane violations.

The city’s top 25 collision-troubled intersections will be monitored by police officers every week.

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By Steven Taxman

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