Extra patrols hit Montana’s highways for Labor Day holiday

Posted at 3:40 PM, Aug 31, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-31 17:40:01-04

HELENA – Extra law enforcement has hit the roads across Montana for the Labor Day weekend with increased patrols aimed at cracking down on impaired driving.

Montana law enforcement, along with the Montana Highway Patrol are taking part in the national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign through the Labor Day Weekend.

State officials note that during the 2016 Labor Day weekend, 433 crash fatalities occurred nationwide and 43% of them involved drivers who had been drinking.

“The request is simple: Don’t drink and drive,” said Colonel Tom Butler of Chief Administrator of the Montana Highway Patrol. “We’re not asking citizens to abstain from drinking altogether, we’re simply requesting that they take a few minutes to make a plan – if you’re going to drink, arrange for a sober ride.”

Statistics show that Montana has seen a slow decline in serious injuries due to impaired driving over the past three years but the state continues to have one of the highest fatality rates in the nation for the number of deaths caused by impaired drivers.

“The trend is moving in a positive direction, but we still have a lot of work to do,” said Mike Tooley, director of the Montana Department of Transportation. “Our goal is to have zero fatalities. And that means zero drunk driving.”

The consequences of receiving a DUI in Montana can include having your license revoked, possible jail time, and up to $10,000 in fines.