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Police crackdown on drunk drivers

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Police in New York will crack down on drunk driving Aug. 18-Sept. 5.

NEW YORK — Police started a crackdown on drunk drivers Thursday as part of efforts to keep fatalities down as Labor Day weekend approaches, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced.

Labor Day weekend is one of the deadliest times of year for drunk driver fatalities, according to Gov. Cuomo’s office. Alcohol was involved in more than 7,000 crashes in New York in 2015 and one third of all traffic fatalities involve drunk drivers.

“Drunk drivers are a danger to themselves and others, and law enforcement is committed to ensuring the safety of everyone on the road,” Gov. Cuomo said. “Impaired driving is a reckless and dangerous crime with potentially fatal consequences, and I urge New Yorkers to drive responsibly to avoid senseless tragedies.”

Crackdown periods, like the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign scheduled to last until Sept. 5, coincide with times when large numbers of impaired drivers hit the road. Each year, about 10,000 people die on roadways because of drunk driving incidents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Just consider all of the lost talent, lost love and companionship for family and friends, lost contributions toward a better society, lost opportunities to live and grow – all because some people made bad choices to drink and drive, and snuffed out all that potential. It’s a tragedy all around, that doesn’t have to be,” said Peter Kehoe, Executive Director of the New York State Sheriff’s Association.