HANOVER TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Drinking and driving is a top safety issue in Northeastern and Central Pennsylvania right now and a local effort is underway reminding drivers just how tragic the consequences could be if they get behind the wheel while under the influence.
“Years and years ago, I had a cousin-in-law. She lost her legs,” said Kim Lloyd, Hanover Township.
All because of a drunk driver.
This is what started the S.O.B.E.R. Campaign. A bold statement to remind drivers of the consequences of drinking and driving.
Eyewitness News checked archives to see the last car crash covered involving someone who was arrested under suspicion of driving while under the influence.
The answer? Just yesterday.
“Troopers there on scene did an investigation and she was taken into custody for suspicion of driving under DUI,” said Tpr. Robert Urban, Community Service Officer, State Police Troop R.
“I think people still drive and drink at the same time. I just don’t think they are getting it through their heads what can happen. You might not die, but you’re going to kill someone else. I know I couldn’t live with myself if that happened,” said Lloyd.
If you think this can’t be you, 293 people died last year in Pennsylvania due to drinking and driving.
Here are more statistics on alcohol related crashes in PA.
“It’s a campaign called slow on the bottle, enjoy the road or S.O.B.E.R., for short. It’s a campaign we do over the holidays to remind people not to mix holiday cheer with holiday traffic because it is a deadly combination,” explained Stefanie Wolownick, organizer.
You can see these smashed, upside down cars as you drive by three locations in our area. One is off of Route 309 in Wilkes-Barre, another can be found by Memorial Highway in Shavertown and another in front of Hanover Area Junior-Senior High school.
“I’ve seen them for years up and down the street. I think it’s a fantastic idea. It reminds you not to drink and drive. You know, what can happen,” said Lloyd.
According to PennDOT, ten percent of holiday crashes involve someone driving under the influence.
Advocates agree on one piece of advice If you’ve been drinking get an Uber, Lyft, or designated driver.
In 2020, about one in four traffic fatalities involved alcohol.