CALCASIEU PARISH, LA (KPLC) - Law enforcement usually deals with a drunken driving spike during the holiday season. They're once again encouraging drivers to think before getting behind the wheel and reminding them of their options to get home safely.
Drinking is sometimes a part of holiday celebrations. But drinking and driving doesn't have to be. Louisiana State Police Troop D has arrested over one thousand motorists who have chosen to get behind the wheel after drinking so far this year. As New Year's Eve approaches, Sergeant James Anderson sends one message to drivers.
"Please don't do it," said Anderson. "It's not worth it. We've had some terrible crashes caused in this area as a result of it."
Last year state police arrested twelve hundred motorists for DWI. Last December, troopers worked seven fatal crashes, but this year, they've only worked one, and alcohol was not involved.
Many people choose to celebrate the holidays by having a few drinks, but before you decide to get behind to get behind the wheel of your car, consider your options.
"The hardest thing we do as police officers is to knock on someone's door and tell them they're loved one's not going to come home," said Anderson. "We don't want to do that for anyone this holiday season."
Two local programs are available to motorists who find themselves too intoxicated to drive. Guy's Towing Service is offered to drivers in Lake Charles, Lafayette, Broussard and Baton Rouge. They offer a free tow and ride, but only to individuals who are going home. The vehicle must operate and motorists must not have been already detained by law enforcement.
Elite Service Towing and Recovery teamed with KYKZ and Southwest Beverage Company to offer "Tow and Geaux," a free tow and ride to those individuals in need. These programs are aimed to keep drunken motorists off the roadways.
"I think they're great," said Anderson. "I mean obviously we want people to choose a designated driver before they go to a restaurant, bar, party, casino. We want people to think ahead. But if for some reason they wind up in a situation where they don't have a designated driver available, it's a wonderful service, a great way to keep themselves and others safe this New Year's holiday weekend."
To be eligible for Guy's Towing Service, the vehicle being towed must operate and the motorist cannot have been detained by law enforcement.
To utilize "Tow & Geaux" call Elite Services at (337) 433-3548. For T.O.W.E.D. motorists can call (337) 237-4897.