COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – Law enforcement agencies in central Ohio prepare to try to keep the roads as safe as possible for the holiday weekend. Wednesday night, before Thanksgiving, is one of the most popular nights for people to visit bars. Columbus Police Officer Robert Barrett explained that the Columbus Division of Police plans to have extra patrols watch for impaired driving.
“I truly hope I don’t find anybody. I truly hope people do heed the message and do drink responsibly, make sure they have a safe way home for both their family and their friends and their loved ones,” said Officer Barrett.
Officer Barrett has worked in the Traffic Bureau for 25 years. He urges people to make plans to get home safely and responsibly. The extra patrols of officers who are specially trained to catch impaired driving will be out Wednesday through Sunday.
“It’s probably one of the most common incidents we run across, common crimes we run across and it’s completely 100% preventable,” he said. “Today’s day and age with Lyft and Uber and everything else and taxis, you can get to and from safely with minimal cost and not put somebody else at risk.”
From the Wednesday before Thanksgiving through the Sunday after in 2020, Ohio State Highway Patrol (OSHP) troopers made 303 OVI arrests, according to OSHP. In Franklin County, Sheriff Dallas Baldwin wants to remind people not to drink and drive.
“It’s the holiday time. It’s Thanksgiving but we want you to be around to have a thanksgiving. There’s nothing worse than an accident that occurs, somebody, taken from us,” said Sheriff Baldwin.