© 2023 KMUW
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Kansas Law Enforcement Agencies Launch Campaign to Reduce Impaired Driving

Topeka Police Department
Representatives from Kansas law enforcement agencies launch traffic safety campaign targeting impaired driving.

Law enforcement agencies throughout Kansas are increasing their patrols for impaired drivers the next few weeks.

The stepped up enforcement is part of a national traffic safety campaign called “You drink. You drive. You Lose.” Expect to see billboards and commercials with the message, too.

Officers will target drivers who are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Chris Bortz with the Kansas Department of Transportation says men under 34 are the biggest offenders.

“In 2017, male drivers accounted for nearly 80 percent of all impaired driving fatalities and 70 percent of all impaired driving injuries in Kansas,” Bortz says.

KDOT is partnering with about 150 Kansas law enforcement agencies for the initiative. Representatives of several police departments joined Bortz at a news conference Thursday in Wichita to launch the campaign.

“Kansas averages nearly three people injured every day and one person killed every four days in alcohol-related crashes,” says Officer Brandon Hall, an impaired driving specialist with the Wichita Police Department.

Overall, Bortz says nearly one in five deadly crashes in the state involve an impaired driver.

“Impaired driving is 100 percent preventable. Don’t let one bad decision impact the rest of your life,” he says.

The enforcement campaign runs through Labor Day weekend.

Deborah joined the news team at KMUW in September 2014 as a news reporter. She spent more than a dozen years working in news at both public and commercial radio and television stations in Ohio, West Virginia and Detroit, Michigan. Before relocating to Wichita in 2013, Deborah taught news and broadcasting classes at Tarrant County College in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas area.