Georgia Sees Improvements In Traffic And Alcohol Deaths As 2011 Data Released

Thursday, December 13, 2012

A federal study released Thursday shows Georgia ranks below the national average and Southeastern states in alcohol-related traffic fatalities for 2011.

The data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows that from 2010 to 2011, the state experienced 24 fewer traffic deaths, which accounts for a 1.9 percent reduction; and 22 fewer alcohol-impaired driving deaths, which represents a 7.4% reduction. Georgia was shown to be five percent better than the national average of total reduction in alcohol-related fatalities.

“This data just further indicates that Georgia’s aggressive enforcement of DUI law is working,” said Harris Blackwood, director of the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety. “But this good news doesn’t mean we’ll ease up on our state’s impaired drivers. We have more work to do and we’ll continue to crack down on DUI’s 365 days a year.”

Overall from 2010 to 2011, the nation experienced 632 fewer traffic fatalities, which represents a 1.9 percent reduction. There were also 258 fewer alcohol-related driving deaths, which represents a 2.5 percent reduction.

Georgia, however, is still on track to experience an increase in fatalities for 2012 for the first time in six years. As of Thursday, Georgia has experienced 67 more traffic fatalities than at the same time last year. In total, the state experienced 1,236 traffic deaths in 2011.

These statistics are exactly why the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (GOHS) is adding a special message to its annual holiday campaign of Operation Zero Tolerance, which begins Friday. In addition to reminding Georgia motorists that if they don’t drive sober, they’ll get pulled over, GOHS has also launched Operation Safe Holidays to ask our drivers to be extra careful on Georgia roads so the state doesn’t reach a six-year milestone of traffic deaths.

And statistics show, the holiday season isn’t just dangerous in Georgia. NHTSA data also shows that 2,597 people were killed in traffic crashes across the country in December 2010 and 775 of those were killed in crashes involving alcohol-impaired drivers.

While the loss of life is tragic enough, drunk driving can also create a tremendous financial burden. Statistics show that the average cost of a DUI can climb to nearly $10,000.

“The fact is that DUI’s are a drain on the state’s resources, the offender’s resources and the resources of any potential victim,” said Director Blackwood. “It’s imperative that Georgia motorists don’t continue their Christmas partying behind the wheel. Law enforcement all over the state will be cracking down on impaired drivers and they will not hesitate to send you to jail, even if it is Christmas.”

Georgia’s annual holiday campaign of Operation Zero Tolerance begins on Friday, and will last through New Year’s Day. For more information on enforcement activities in your community, contact your local law enforcement agency. For more information on Operation Zero Tolerance, visit www.gahighwaysafty.org


Heartland Ranch To Fund Interactive Arcade At Orange Grove Center

Orange Grove Center, Heartland Ranch and UTC Department of Health Promotion and Human Performance announce the grand opening of the Heartland Arcade at Orange Grove Center, Isidore Tyber Building,  2325 Shady Ln.  on Friday from 10:30-11:30 a.m. Funded by the Heartland Ranch, the arcade will provide interactive kinetic video and arcade gaming opportunities for individuals ... (click for more)

'Cops For A Cause' In Support Of 2nd Annual Chattanooga Autism Awareness Walk

The 2nd Annual Chattanooga Autism Awareness Walk will take place on Saturday, Nov. 8 at Coolidge Park with a starting time of 10:45 a.m.,  with children’s activities available starting at 8 a.m. The route for the 2 miles total walk will start at Coolidge Park and continue over the pedestrian bridge, around the art district and then back to Coolidge Park. For this ... (click for more)

Two North Shore Sold To Pennsylvania Real Estate Firm For Almost $24 Million

The Two North Shore commercial development on Manufacturers Road in North Chattanooga has been sold to a Pennsylvania real estate firm for  $23,983,363. Steve Arnsdorff, who developed the successful center from the ground up and has continued to manage it, said the deal closed last week. He said the sale for the property at 319 Manufacturers Road is to Stoltz Real Estate ... (click for more)

Lookout Valley Middle High School Closed Friday Due To Water Main Break

County school officials said late Thursday night that LookoutValley Middle High School will be closed Friday due to a water main break. Officials said, "This is an official message from the Hamilton County Department of Education to the parents, faculty, and staff of Lookout Valley Middle High School.  Please accept our apologies for the lateness of this message. "Due ... (click for more)

Thanks For Publishing The Stokes Photo Book

I pre-ordered the Stokes Photo Book and picked it up Wednesday . The covers and content are very high quality and contain photos you will not see anywhere else.  This book of photos is worth much more than $35.  I have seen many historic photos of my hometown Chattanooga, but this collection is amazing. My favorites are National Cemetery, Confederate Cemetery near ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Saban: ‘Ratings Don’t Matter’

When the first College Football Playoff rankings were released earlier this week, Alabama football coach Nick Saban got it right on the button when he shrugged, “I don't even care, to be honest with you." "To me, none of it matters, What does it matter?” he laughed at the Tide’s No. 6 ranking. “I mean, it only matters where you end up at the end. So what matters to us is how ... (click for more)