Drunk, distracted driving key issues for Hawaii road safety

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At the Beat the School Jam press conference this morning, officials from the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) and Department of Transportation Services (DTS) took time to address key issues for road safety: drunk driving, and distracted driving.

The Hawaii Police Department started its “Drive sober or get pulled over” program last week in an effort to mitigate drunk-driving accidents.

“More than half of fatal accidents in Hawaii are because someone chose to drink and drive,” HDOT deputy director Ed Sniffen said. The “drive sober or get pulled over” program will continue through Labor Day weekend, one of the most dangerous weekends of the year for car accidents.

“The intent of this campaign is not to ticket everybody or arrest people. It’s to educate people so we can start saving lives,” Sniffen said.

While driving sober is a must, DTS deputy director Jon Nouchi explained that “inattention is just as deadly as inebriation.” He urged parents to be good examples in both their driving and walking habits.

“Don’t jaywalk, watch the signals, cross within the signal timing, and when you drive, don’t charge the yellow light,” Nouchi said.

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