Salisbury Press

Monday, November 11, 2019

One in every 57 drivers found impaired in DUI traffic details

Thursday, August 18, 2016 by jim marsh Special to The Press in Police Log

Salisbury Township Police Department officers participated in DUI driving safety details on and near township roadways recently and found one in every 57 stops involved drug or alcohol impairment by those behind the wheel.

The first detail was a checkpoint funded by the Lehigh County DUI Task Force. The detail began 11 p.m. Aug. 5 and ended 4 a.m. Aug. 6, said Salisbury Senior Patrol Officer Bryan Losagio, the township police department’s traffic safety officer. The checkpoint was located in the 1600 block of Broadway and was set up to locate drivers who were operating vehicles while under the influence of alcohol and or drugs, Losagio said.

“About 30 officers worked this detail from multiple police departments throughout Lehigh County,” Losagio said. “Our goal for this checkpoint was simple, To remove irresponsible drunk drivers from our roadways.”

Losagio said about 800 vehicles passed through the checkpoint, with 21 drivers showing signs of impairment. Out of the 21 who showed signs of impairment, 13 were arrested for suspicion of driving drunk and one was arrested for suspicion of driving while on drugs.

Two other arrests were made for passengers inside vehicles who had drugs in their possession. Three motor vehicle code violation citations were issued.

”Anyone who says drunk driving is no longer an issue on our roadways needs to do the math,” Losagio said.

“Out of about 800 cars passing through our checkpoint, one in every 57 had a drunk driver inside. Think of how many cars you pass on your way home on a Friday night after dinner. It’s in the hundreds. If one in 57 of them were drunk drivers, think of the risks you and your family run. There’s no excuse to drive drunk or while high on drugs. There’s also no excuse to say you couldn’t find a safe ride home.

“With all of the technology right on our cell phones, it’s never been easier to find a cab or online car service to drive someone home safely,” Losagio said. “It’s also so much less expensive than being arrested for driving while intoxicated.”

A second detail involved a DUI roving patrol funded by a Lehigh County Gaming Grant funded by the Sands Casino, Losagio said. “The detail targeted main east side roadways used to pass through our township.”

The roving safety driving check ran 11 p.m. Aug. 5 to 4 a.m. Aug. 6 also, with one Salisbury Township police officer working the detail.

Losagio said the roving patrol resulted in one DUI arrest made after an officer witnessed a driver traveling west bound on East Susquehanna Street completely on the wrong side of the roadway. The driver narrowly missed hitting another vehicle head on at a speed of nearly 50 mph. Losagio said blood alcohol results on the driver are pending.

One felony fleeing and eluding a police officer arrest was made after a driver refused to stop his vehicle and fled. He was apprehended a short time later by the officer. The arrest resulted in two stop sign violations, one violation for driving on the wrong side of the road, and one careless driving citation. The driver’s vehicle was impounded.

“Our police department has several other traffic safety details planned in the coming weeks,” Losagio said.

“Our goal is to keep our township residents safe, and those who are passing through our township safe. Driving drunk is 100 percent preventable. Just don’t do it. If you do it in Salisbury Township, expect to be arrested. The risk far outweighs not finding an alternative ride home,” Losagio said.