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Winter Holiday DUI Arrests Down Nearly Half from Last Year

Police departments countywide are adding extra patrols to catch drunk drivers as the winter holiday season progresses. So far, Milpitas has had one DUI arrest.

Police departments countywide have begun their yearly crackdown on winter holiday DUIs, known as the "Avoid the 13" program.

Beginning at 12:01 Saturday morning, Dec. 17, police departments and the California Highway Patrol (CHP) have been out in full force, patrolling the roads and highways for drunk drivers. Some cities, such as Mountain View and San Jose, are spending extra budget dollars for additional saturation patrols during the Winter Holiday Avoid the 13 time period.

Over the program's first weekend, Dec. 17-18, the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office reported 36 DUI arrests countywide, and no DUI-related deaths, though there were three alcohol-related traffic collisions that resulted in two minor injuries. As of press time, stats for individual cities for those dates were not available.

These 36 DUI arrests made are down nearly half from the same weekend in 2010, in which authorities made 64 arrests.

The County Sheriff's Office says, all regularly scheduled traffic and patrol officers will be "focusing their efforts on stopping and arresting DUI drivers during their normal shifts" during the Winter Holiday Avoid the 13 campaign, which lasts a total of 17 days, through Sunday, Jan. 1. Multiple DUI checkpoints and local roving DUI patrols are set countywide for the duration of the campaign.

All police, sheriff and CHP departments encourage all motorists to help make the communities safer by calling 911 to report drunk drivers.

Below are the total number of DUI arrests made in each individual city between 12:01 a.m. and 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 20.

Funding for the Avoid the 13 program is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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