RIVERSIDE (CNS) – California Highway Patrol officers will ramp up patrols on state highways and roads Friday evening and through the weekend to catch drunken and drug-impaired drivers as part of the agency’s annual Fourth of July crackdown.
The CHP’s “maximum enforcement period” will begin at 6 p.m. and conclude at 11:59 p.m. Sunday, during which all available officers will hit the streets for targeted anti-DUI patrols.
“Should the upcoming weekend include a road trip, stay safe and healthy with a few additional precautions,” CHP Commissioner Warren Stanley said. “Obeying speed limits, buckling up and not driving impaired or distracted will be more important than ever.”
Officers from the Beaumont, Blythe, Indio, Riverside and Temecula CHP stations will deploy on inland freeways, highways and unincorporated roads for the campaign.
During last year’s Fourth of July MEP, the CHP arrested 1,317motorists on suspicion of DUI statewide, compared to 389 in the 2018 campaign, which lasted only a day.
According to the agency, 21 people were killed in collisions investigated by the CHP during the 2019 enforcement effort. A total of 36 died across all jurisdictions statewide.
Stanley noted citations for motorists driving in excess of 100 mph have skyrocketed. During the Memorial Day weekend crackdown, CHP officers wrote 458 tickets for exceeding 100 mph — a 173% increase over the 2019 Memorial Day period.
Authorities from jurisdictions throughout the Inland Empire have noted dramatic increases in 100 mph driving, attributable to lower traffic volumes stemming from the coronavirus public health orders.
“However you choose to celebrate the weekend, do it without putting yourself or others at risk,” the commissioner said.
The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department and municipal police departments throughout the county will carry out targeted patrols of their own to snare DUI suspects.