‘Take Back Our Highways’ kicks off in county

Published 11:23 pm Friday, August 15, 2008

Local city and county law enforcement agencies will increase pressure on the streets this weekend to begin a week-long effort to increase safety and reduce traffic fatalities.

Rusty Patterson, assistant chief of police for the City of Andalusia, said the Andalusia Police Department will increase its presence this weekend to crack down on drunk driving.

“We will be doing some road saturation,” he said. “We will heavily patrol the city limits of Andalusia looking for speeders and any individuals who may choose to drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.”

Patterson said roadblocks will be utilized this weekend and at various other times throughout the month of August in an effort to reduce drunk driving in Andalusia.

The initiative is funded by as part of the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs as part of its “Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest” campaign created to increase law enforcement presence during the weeks preceding Labor Day on Mon., Sept. 1.

David Anderson, chief deputy of the Covington County Sheriff’s Office, said the CCSO will increase its presence throughout Covington County to assist Alabama State Troopers with their “Take Back Our Highways” campaign and ensure that motorists navigate the county roadways safely.

“Labor Day is the last big holiday of the summer,” Anderson said. “We will be doing saturation patrols, which means we will have more than one car patrolling a certain area.

“We will have sobriety checkpoints established at several different locations throughout the county,” he added. “You will go to jail if you are caught driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol.”

Gov. Bob Riley announced Wednesday that more than 125 additional state troopers will hit the roads Aug. 18-24, ramping up DUI, seat belt and aggressive driving enforcement during the campaign.