New Year's DUI Arrests Down - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

New Year's DUI Arrests Down

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The Nevada Highway Patrol arrested seven people for driving under the influence overnight. That amounts to about 3% of their traffic stops, so they say that could mean more people are drinking responsibly.

With so many people drinking on New Year's Eve, the hope is that they don't get behind the wheel.

"Hopefully, that's one of the many resolutions people make and adhere to," Trooper Chuck Allen said. "Wearing a seatbelt, never drinking and driving, and not talking on a cell phone will greatly minimize the chance of an unplanned event on the highway."

That also means that people celebrating the New Year should also have a plan on how to get home safely.

More than 275 people were pulled over, last night.

Luckily, many of them were designated drivers.

"That's the good news because there's nothing worse than stopping somebody, finding out that he or she is DUI, and there was a sober passenger in the vehicle," Allen said. "That does happen rather frequently, as well."

Keeping our roads safe was the goal, heading into last night.

While seven people started the New Year in jail for driving under the influence, that is actually half as many as two years ago.

"It's seven more than we wanted to see, last night, but the number could have been much higher," Allen said.

There were also just five car accidents between 5PM and 7AM, on northern Nevada highways.

But the lower DUI arrests and crashes could also be because of the timing of the holiday.

"If it falls on a Friday or a Saturday, for example, we may have more people drinking more because they know they have a longer weekend of consecutive days off," Allen said.

NHP also beefed up the number of troopers for New Year's and they say the jail was ready to take more people in than a usual night.

"It's really hard to predict what the calls for service are going to be in the public safety business, but we were more than prepared to handle any situation that came about last night," Allen said.

It was also a relatively quiet night for Reno and Sparks police, who arrested a combined 11 people for DUI.

In Douglas County, Deputies made 14 arrests for a variety of charges in the downtown casino area, in Stateline.

Written by Paul Nelson
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