Tennessee Department of Transportation to Spend Millions on DUI Campaign
After receiving criticism about an anti-DUI advertisement that ran earlier this year, the Tennessee Department of Transportation will spend more than $10 million on a new ad campaign that will run through December 2020 that’s designed to raise awareness about the dangers of drinking and driving.
According to a report by wkrn.com, the state hired an outside contractor to oversee the $11.5 million campaign on behalf of the Tennessee Highway Governor’s Safety Office.
The state launched an anti-DUI ad campaign earlier this year that attracted criticism due to the slogans used. The state took down the ad campaign’s website in mid-July, with one state representative calling the campaign offensive and a waste of taxpayer dollars.
Work on the new ad campaign began on Dec. 9 and it is expected to run for around five years on various media platforms throughout the state.
How Do Police Identify Drunk and Intoxicated Drivers?
People who get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol or consuming drugs and prescription medications pose significant risks to themselves, their passengers, and other motorists. Because they experience delayed reaction times, impaired judgment, blurry vision, and poor decision-making processes, drunk and impaired drivers are among the biggest threats to everyone who shares the roadways in Tennessee.
Police and state troopers are always on the lookout for drivers who are impaired by being aware of a few tell-tale signs, including:
- Driving at night without headlights
For the vast majority of drivers, turning on their vehicle’s headlights when driving at night or at dawn is an automatic behavior. But drivers who are intoxicated or impaired may forget this crucial step and drive on busy streets, highways, and interstates without their headlights. Police are trained to recognize vehicles without headlights during periods of low visibility as being a possible sign that the driver may be intoxicated or impaired.
- Weaving and failure to maintain a lane
Staying between the painted lines of a lane is simple and easy for most drivers, but it can be extremely difficult for drivers who are intoxicated or impaired due to the consumption of alcohol or prescription medications. Drivers who continuously weave in and out of their lanes, or who drift into other lanes and put other drivers at risk are considered to be high risk and likely to be driving while under the influence.
- Car accidents that occur late at night or early in the morning
If police respond to a car accident that occurs during off-peak driving hours—especially on weekends—they may be on heightened alert due to the increased possibility that one or more of the drivers involved are intoxicated. Drivers who are found to be intoxicated and cause accidents—especially if one or more victims were seriously injured—can face serious penalties and charges.
- Inconsistent speed, erratic braking and acceleration, or driving under the speed limit
In an effort to avoid attracting attention, some intoxicated drivers may reduce their speed to well below the speed limit. However, this often has the opposite intended result, and police frequently view vehicles that are traveling significantly slower than the flow of traffic as suspicious and consider the possibility that the driver may be intoxicated or impaired.
At Matt Hardin Law, our Nashville auto accident attorneys know how dangerous drinking and driving can be for both the person who is intoxicated and every motorist who encounters him or her on the roadway. Our law firm supports the efforts of the Tennessee Highway Patrol, Governor’s Highway Safety Office, and local police departments throughout the state in their efforts to crack down on drunk and impaired driving and make roadways safer for everyone.
If you or someone you love was injured in an accident caused by a negligent or impaired driver, we may be able to help you get compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and other accident-related expenses. To find out how we can put our 20 years of experience to work for your family, dial (615) 200-1111 or complete a free online consultation form.