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Authorities with the Jasper police and the Dubois County Sheriff’s Department’s announced late last week they will join efforts with over 250 Indiana state and local law enforcement agencies to increase education and enforcement around dangerous and impaired driving.

Beginning tomorrow and continuing through Sunday the 27th, officers across the state will conduct high-visibility patrols specifically designated to identify and intercept those driving agressively and under the influence.

In a joint release Jasper Assistant Police Chief Nathan Schmitt and Dubois County Sheriff’s Deputy Tim Lampert say between Indiana’s deep-rooted basketball pride and the St. Patrick’s Day holiday, much of the hoosier state celebrates throughout the month of March. Schmitt and Lampert say celebrating responsibly is important and that officers will be out in full force to keep those celebrating safe. They say anyone driving dangerously or found over the limit will be arrested.

Increased enforcement during the month of March is a statewide effort supported by federal funding allocated to the local departments by the Traffic Safety Division of the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute. A number of officers from both agencies will work overtime to conduct observational patrols and sobriety checkpoints around the clock.

The Criminal Justice Institute says in March of last year, there were 529 alcoholic-related crashes across Indiana, resulting in 214 injuries and five fatalities. Also during that same time period, crashreports indicated over 1600 collisions occured due to dangerous driving resulting in 332 injuries and four fatalities. Dangerous driving includes such factors as “speed too fast for weather conditions” “Driver distraction” and “driving asleep or fatigued.”

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