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Law enforcement out in full force over Fourth of July weekend


LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Law enforcement officers will be out in force over the Fourth of July weekend, on the lookout for motorists driving while impaired or otherwise violating traffic laws, beginning tonight.

The California Highway Patrol’s “maximum enforcement period” will begin at 6 p.m., and will continue through 11:59 p.m. Sunday.

“All available officers will be out on the roadways for enhanced enforcement efforts, and (will) be available to assist motorists in need,” said CHP Southern Division Chief Dan Bower.

Officers will look for motorists who are driving drunk, but will also focus on reducing problems caused by aggressive drivers, Bower said.

“Aggressive drivers often commit multiple moving violations, in addition to speeding,” Bower said.

“This combination often results in needless traffic collisions, with serious injuries,” Bower said. “CHP’s goal is to eliminate this behavior through education and enforcement, ultimately saving lives.”

Funding for the increased enforcement program was provided by a grant from the state Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety  Administration.

“The Fourth of July weekend … means trips to the beach, pool parties, and barbecues,” the Los Angeles Police Department said in a statement.

“Unfortunately, it could also mean drunk driving, traffic collisions, injuries and deaths.”

Authorities urged motorists to follow common-sense guidelines:

  • Designate a sober driver before leaving home, and give that person
  • your keys
  • Wear your seatbelt, as this is your best protection against an impaired or aggressive driver
  • Use public transportation, if possible
  • If you become impaired, don’t get behind the wheel

“Impaired drivers place other drivers — and pedestrians — at risk of being involved in a traffic collision,” the LAPD said.

“Driving with a blood-alcohol level of .08 percent or higher is illegal in every state,” police said. “Call 911 if you see a possible drunk driver on the road.”