State Police note additional patrols during New Year's celebration period


SCITUATE — The Rhode Island State Police are once again stepping up patrols during the New Year's holiday period, warning motorists not to drink and drive as they celebrate.

"The Rhode Island State Police will be stepping up enforcement of driving while impaired, speeding, aggressive driving, texting while driving, seat belt, and child restraint laws.  The goal is to make our highways safe to ensure everyone has a happy and memorable New Year," State Police Superintendent Colonel Steven G. O’Donnell wrote in a press release

A number of the additional patrols are being funded through the Rhode Island Department of Transportation, Office of Highway Safety. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2012 there were 10,322 fatal crashes involving a driver with a Blood Alcohol Content of .08 or higher-31 percent of total traffic fatalities for the year. The Holiday season has proven to be most dangerous time of year to travel our nation’s roadways due to impaired operators.

An increase in the volume of traffic during the New Year’s holiday period is expected on highways across the state.  Motorists are urged to immediately report dangerous drivers or hazardous road conditions to the State Police by dialing *77 or 911 on their cellular phones.  There is no charge for these calls which greatly assist our efforts to protect the citizens and visitors of Rhode Island.

The Rhode Island State Police requests the following assistance and cooperation from all motorists:

  • Please obey all motor vehicle laws
  • Don’t drink and drive
  • Be patient, and allow extra time for delays that may occur due to holiday traffic
  • Pay attention to road and weather conditions and adjust driving accordingly
  • Buckle up.  It’s the law and will be strictly enforced during this holiday period



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A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.