‘Drive Hammered, Get Nailed’ anti-DUI effort starts soon

August 16, 2011

By Warren Kagarise

Issaquah police officers plan to join a regional push to pull drunken drivers from local roads as summer comes to a close.

The agency is joining other police departments in King County — and more than 10,000 law enforcement agencies nationwide — from Aug. 19 to Sept. 5 in the Drive Hammered, Get Nailed campaign.

Beneath the clever title is a serious message about the impacts of drunken driving and driving under the influence. DUI crashes claimed 38 people on King County roads last year.

During the Drive Hammered, Get Nailed campaign last year, officers on routine and extra patrols arrested 438 people for DUI. Overall, prosecutors charged 9,521 people countywide for DUI last year.

Besides the Issaquah Police Department, the Drive Hammered, Get Nailed campaign includes the nearby Bellevue, Newcastle, North Bend, Sammamish, Snoqualmie and Renton police departments, in addition to the Washington State Patrol.

On the Web

Learn more about impaired driving — and find resources to stop drunken and drugged driving — at the Stop Impaired Driving website.

The effort is organized and supported under the aegis of the King County Target Zero Task Force, a regional effort to crack down on unsafe driving practices.

“This summer, we have unfortunately seen the tragic consequences of DUI crashes in our communities,” Kirkland Police Sgt. Lisa Brouelette said in a statement. “We are here to get unsafe drivers off the road and encourage you to plan for a sober ride home before going out.”

In addition, a state law — nicknamed Hailey’s Law — to require the towing of vehicles driven by drivers arrested for DUI went into effect last month.

The law, a state patrol priority during the 2011 legislative session, sets a 12-hour mandatory hold on such vehicles. The measure is intended to prevent impaired drivers from returning to vehicles and driving again.

Only a registered or legal owner not in the car at the time of arrest is allowed to pick up the car out of impound before the 12-hour hold expires.

The measure is nicknamed for Hailey French, a woman severely injured after a drunken driver hit her in a head-on crash along the Mount Baker Highway in January 2007.

Police had arrested the drunken driver, Janine Parker, hours earlier, but did not book her into jail or impound her vehicle.

“This new law helps eliminate the danger of drunk drivers getting back into their cars and putting everyone at risk,” Washington Traffic Safety Commission Director Lowell Porter said in a statement. “Now, all drunk drivers face the costs of towing and impound in addition to jail time, losing their driver’s license and the high cost of a DUI.”

Warren Kagarise: 392-6434, ext. 234, or wkagarise@isspress.com. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com.

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