Drink. Drive. Lose. | www.fitchburgpride.com | Fitchburg Pride

Drink. Drive. Lose.

In a continued effort to keep the City of Fitchburg roadways safe, the Fitchburg Police Department, with the Massachusetts State Police, are announcing the start of the “Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest.” mobilization.

The citywide effort involves extra traffic enforcement and public information throughout the holiday season, beginning Dec. 11 and running through Jan. 3, 2010. Drunk driving is a serious crime.

In Massachusetts, a first offense for Operating Under the Influence is punishable with a fine of up to $5,000 or by imprisonment for up to two and a half years, or both.

Fitchburg officers will be cracking down on drunk drivers around the clock, with patrols specifically designed to detect impaired drivers.

“We know that the holidays, with all of the parties and family gatherings, provide opportunities to consume alcohol. We want people to enjoy themselves, but we want them to be smart, safe, and – if they are driving – absolutely sober,” said a press release by the Fitchburg Police Department.

The advice is basic; don’t drink and drive.

Yet, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 120 people die in substancerelated vehicle crashes in Massachusetts in 2008. The statewide effort, funded by the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security Highway Safety Division and the City of Fitchburg Police Department, aims to reduce that number.