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Thanksgiving Weekend DUIs: One Arrest In Martinez

Police say Martinez residents are well educated on the dangers of drinking and driving

Perhaps it's because Martinez residents are well aware of the dangers and punishment related to drunken driving, but DUI arrests over the Thanksgiving weekend have become almost non-existent in town.

Between Thanksgiving Day and Sunday evening, Martinez police arrested one driver on suspicion of DUI, according to Lt. Aaron Roth. There were no fatal accidents either.

Over the Thanksgiving weekend in 2011, there were two DUI arrests in Martinez. In 2010, there were three.

Roth said he believes Martinez residents are well educated about drunken driving and know the city's police officers are out in force during the holiday weekend.

"I think when they leave the bars, they know to get a ride with someone who is sober," said Roth.

Across California, Thanksgiving weekend DUIs were down with 224 arrests statewide this year compared to 227 in 2011.

However, road fatalities were up over last year, according to the Contra Costa Times. There were 31 deaths on the roads from Wednesday evening through Sunday morning, according to the California Highway Patrol, compared to 21 for the holiday weekend in 2011. Many of those who died were not wearing seat belts.

Drugs and alcohol, however, may not be the main culprits. Officials say that sleep deprivation, routine change and stress over the holidays were more likely the cause of the recent fatal traffic accidents. The fatalities remain under investigation, but CHP says there are no initial reports of drug or alcohol involvement.


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