Drive sober or get pulled over campaign kicks off statewide - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Drive sober or get pulled over campaign kicks off statewide

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 Eau Claire (WQOW) - Police say underage drinkers getting behind the wheel is becoming a bigger issue in our area. A number of area law enforcement agencies held a kick off event today to bring awareness of the dangers of drunk driving.

"If somebody thinks their buzzed they're probably impaired and over the legal limit," said Officer Kyle Roder with the Eau Claire Police Department.

You'll see more patrols out on the road in the coming weeks as area law enforcement kick off the drive sober or get pulled over campaign.

"As the summer months wind down we want everyone to stay safe,” Roder said. “If you're going to drink think about that in advance and have a ride."

It's an effort to create awareness for everyone but as more and more young kids get a hold of alcohol they're also getting behind the wheel.

"We do see juveniles that are consuming alcohol and coupling that with driving and that just increases the risks," said Roder.

So a program like this can't come at a better time

"We want to continue to focus on that young age group,” said Eau Claire County Sheriff Ron Cramer. “If we can change their thought process about consumption and less consumption then it might just tail with them through their whole life."

It's not just drunk driving police are looking for.

"We are seeing more and more prescription drug abuse and illegal drug use and driving anytime someone is impaired while driving it poses a threat to the community," Roder said.

The grants to law enforcement allow for more officers to be out patrolling during peak drinking times

"If it spurs several people to make the right decision and we're going to get a sober driver because of the campaign or get a taxi then the campaign is very worthwhile," said Cramer.

The drive sober or get pulled over campaign runs until Labor Day.

Just yesterday a 13-year-old girl from Manitowoc was arrested for drunk driving after being pulled over for not having her headlights on.

In that case authorities say there were five other juveniles 14 and under in the car.

In Eau Claire County, three underage drinkers were involved in a drunk driving crash over the weekend. It happened last Saturday on County Highway M near Augusta.

A car carrying three people was unable to take a sharp turn and rolled over. Two people were ejected from the car and one person was found pinned under it.

No one was seriously injured. That crash is still under investigation.

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