If a little bubbly is part of your holiday celebrating, beware of getting behind the wheel your car.
The Crystal Lake Police Department has begun its 2012 "Drive Sober, or Get Pulled Over" holiday crackdown and will intensify enforcement against drunken drivers through New Year's Eve, according to Police Staff Sgt. Dan Hulata.
Patrol officers also is conducting its "Click It, or Ticket" crackdown for drivers not wearing seat belts.
The intensified enforcement effort against drunk drivers and seat belt law violators underscores the disproportionate number of traffic deaths caused by alcohol and failure to buckle up, Hulata said in a press release.
The police department's enforcement efforts will concentrate on the nighttime hours between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.
According to data from the Illinois Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the midnight to 3 a.m. time frame is the deadliest period on Illinois roadways, Hulata said.
The 9 p.m. hour is the time of day when data shows that alcohol involvement and low seat belt use begins to play a "much more significant role in motor vehicle fatalities," Hulata said in the release.
Data shows alcohol and lack of belt use continues throughout the nighttime hours until 6 a.m.
The Crystal Lake Police Department recommends motorists designating a sober driver and not let friends and family members drive drunk - two simple steps to avoid a tragic crash, or an arrest for drunk driving.
Other important tips include:
Plan ahead. Designate a sober driver before going out and give that person your keys.
If you are drunk, call a taxi, use mass transit or call a sober friend or family member to get you home safely.
Promptly report drunk drivers you see on the roadways to law enforcement.
Wear your seat belt and make sure all passengers are buckled up. It is your best defense against a drunk driver.
The law enforcement crackdown runs concurrently with a media campaign that reminds motorists to “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” and “Click It or Ticket,” and is administered by the Illinois Department of Transportation with funds made available via the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Hulata said.