Holiday Traffic Enforcement Plans

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Holiday Traffic Enforcement Plans

Posted: 12/21/2004
Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam and Police Chief Sterling Owen today announced holiday traffic enforcement plans for the upcoming Christmas and New Years holidays. The Christmas holiday enforcement period will begin on Thursday, December 23, 2004 at 4:00 p.m. and conclude at Midnight on Sunday, December 26, 2004. The New Years holiday enforcement campaign will begin at 4:00 p.m. on Friday, December 31, 2004 and conclude at Midnight on Sunday, January 2, 2005.

Chief Owen said the department will continue to focus on drivers who are driving while impaired, speeding, and driving recklessly. Proper use of seat belts and child restraint seats will also be enforced.

This year officers have investigated thirty-five (35) fatal crashes resulting in thirty-eight (38) deaths. Eleven of the fatal crashes involved drivers who were driving while impaired. Blood alcohol content test results are still outstanding in seventeen additional fatal crashes.
Chief Owen said, "The average blood alcohol content (BAC) in fatal crashes this year has been .23 or nearly 3 times the legal limit. Knoxville Police Department officers have also arrested 1,053 people for driving under the influence. That represents a forty percent (40%) increase in the number of arrests over 2003 and a one-hundred percent (100%) increase over 2002."

During the 104 hour-long Christmas enforcement campaign in 2003, officers issued 719 traffic related citations and investigated 97 crashes of which 15 resulted in injuries. This year's reporting period will cover 80 hours. The last fatality recorded during the Christmas reporting period occurred in 2002.

Officers issued 796 traffic related citations during the 32 hour-long New Years holiday enforcement campaign in 2003-2004. Officers also investigated 43 crashes that resulted in two fatalities. This year's reporting period will cover 56 hours.

Chief Owen said, "We urge motorists to slow down, buckle up and above all, please don't drink and drive."