SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois Department of Transportation, Illinois State Police and nearly 200 local law enforcement agencies remind motorists to drive sober to save lives during the New Year’s holiday. Now through the early morning of Jan. 2, Illinois motorists will see additional enforcement patrols across the state to help keep our roads safe.

“Last year, six people died on our roads over New Year’s, and four of those deaths were alcohol-related,” said Cynthia Watters, IDOT’s bureau chief of Safety Programs and Engineering. “It’s everyone’s responsibility to make good decisions before getting behind the wheel. It really is a matter of life or death –– yours as well as others.”

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The holiday campaign features the familiar “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” and “Click It or Ticket” messages. In addition to DUI and seat belt offenders, law enforcement will show zero tolerance for speeding, distracted driving and other offenses.

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“Our troopers will be doing their part to keep roadways safe by strictly enforcing all laws with a focus on seat belt usage, as well as reckless, impaired and distracted drivers,” said ISP Director Leo P. Schmitz. “We ask drivers to please make this holiday safe for all travelers by driving sober and making responsible choices before getting behind the wheel. With the public’s voluntary compliance, we are confident the holiday can be safe and enjoyable for everyone.”

Take these important steps to avoid a tragedy:

  • Plan ahead. If you plan to drink or use any impairing drugs or substances, plan for a sober driver to take you home. If it’s your turn to be the designated driver, take that role seriously - your friends are relying on you.
  • Remember, it is never OK to drive impaired. Alcohol and other drugs affect skills necessary for driving.
  • Use a community sober ride program if available, call a cab or use your favorite rideshare app.
  • If you see a friend or family member who is about to drive impaired, take the keys away and help them get home safely. They’ll thank you later.

The “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” and “Click It or Ticket” programs are administered by IDOT using federal funds.

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