Author: M. Rohrbacher#265
Date: December 14, 2011 2:00 PM

AVOID the 13 Winter Holiday Campaign Begins

There Are No Holiday Festivities in Jail

RUOK? is the Wrong Message to Send this Holiday Season

San Rafael, CA – December 14, 2011. As you celebrate the holiday season enjoying traditions, food, family and fun, be reminded that police, sheriff and the CHP will be out in force during the holiday season from December 16, 2011, to January 2, 2012, to arrest anyone caught driving drunk behind the wheel.

“RUOK?” is the text message version of the often heard question, “Are you okay to drive?”  If you have to ask someone the question, you already know the answer.  You know they have had too much to drink or are showing signs of being “buzzed.”  You know that they are not okay to drive.  Asking the question doesn’t relieve you of the responsibility.  Call them a cab, take them home yourself, offer your couch.

Two DUI/ Driver’s License Checkpoints, a Multi Agency DUI Task Force deployment and roving DUI patrols are scheduled locally in partnership with law enforcement statewide and around the county during the Winter Holiday Anti-DUI Campaign.  DUI Checkpoints are placed in locations that have the greatest opportunity for achieving drunk and drugged driving deterrence.  Officers will be contacting drivers passing through the checkpoint for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment. The campaign schedule is as follows:

  • A DUI/driver’s license checkpoint on Friday, December 16th  in San Rafael, on westbound Manuel T. Freitas Parkway at Las Gallinas Avenue from 6:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m.
  • A DUI/driver’s license checkpoint on Friday, December 23rd in San Rafael from 6:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. location TBA.
  • Saturday, December 31st a “strike team” of roving patrols specifically on the look out for drunk and impaired drivers will operate throughout the County from 6:00 p.m. to midnight.

DUI Checkpoints, along with regularly scheduled high visibility DUI enforcement, are proven strategies with the goal of removing impaired drivers from the road and heightening awareness of the dangers of driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol.  According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), sobriety checkpoint programs can yield considerable cost savings: $6 for every $1 spent.

“There will be no spreading holiday cheer behind the bars of a jail cell,” San Rafael Police Chief Jeff Franzini said.  “Don’t let your 2011 holiday season end in an arrest, or worse, death.  Remember, whether you’ve had way too many or just one too many, it’s not worth the risk.”

In December 2009, there were 753 people were killed nationwide in crashes that involved drivers or motorcycle riders with blood alcohol concentrations of .08 or higher.  InCalifornia, 57 individuals died on the states streets and highways.

“The message is simple, Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.  Drinking alcohol or being under the influence of drugs do not mix with driving.  If you plan to consume alcohol, you should also plan not to get behind the wheel of a vehicle or ride a motorcycle,” said Chief Franzini. 

 San Rafael Police recommend these simple tips for a safe holiday season:           

    • Plan a safe way home before the festivities begin;
    • Before drinking, designate a sober driver and leave your car keys at home;
    • If you’re impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation;
    • If you happen to see a drunk driver on the road, don’t hesitate to contact your local law enforcement,
    • And remember, “RUOK?” is a ridiculous question.  If you think they’ve had too much, they probably have.  Help him or her make other arrangements to get home safely.

The national Driver Sober or Get Pulled Over crackdown is led by the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) and NHTSA, with the California Avoid DUI Task Force Campaign combining high-visibility enforcement and heightened public awareness through publicity.

For statewide and local Avoid DUI Task Force Campaign Enforcement Schedules and Daily DUI Arrest/Fatal Stats, visit  The Program is funded by the California Office of Traffic Safety who reminds everyone to please – Report Drunk Drivers – Call 9-1-1!

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Last Modified: December 14, 2011 2:41 EST (by Holm)

Copyright © 2011 San Rafael Police Department