Police crack down on impaired, reckless driving during Labor Day weekend
Police throughout the Hudson Valley have launched special enforcements to crack down on drunk and impaired driving during the Labor Day weekend.
Most of these efforts will continue through Monday night.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Labor Day is the second deadliest holiday of the year for auto fatalities.
Historically, long holiday weekends result in a sharp uptick in people being reckless on the roads.
It is a particularly frustrating time for the Westchester Chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, the nation's largest nonprofit fighting against drunk driving.
"When you get behind the wheel, when you have any kind of substance in you, you run the risk not just of harming or killing yourself, but of people who you don't even know," says Carole Sears, president of the Westchester Chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
It is a personal warning from Sears, who was severely injured and lost her husband in a drunk driving crash 20 years ago.
"We're not just a figure, a number or a ticket that's been given out. We're people," she adds.
About 40% of fatal crashes nationwide during Labor Day weekend in 2020 involved an alcohol-impaired driver, according to the National Safety Council.
The nonprofit estimates more than 450 people may die on U.S. roads this holiday weekend.
"This is the most important thing if you are with somebody, and you feel the need to say to that person 'are you OK to drive?' They're not," Sears says.
Four people died statewide in a car crash last Labor Day weekend and state police arrested 200 people for DWI.