Youth Impaired Driving Manual for Sheriffs DOT HS - 809214
Project: Eye In The Sky, Rusk, Barron, Sawyer & Washburn Counties, Wisconsin

Project: “Fatal Vision” Awareness Program, Pierce County Sheriff’s Office, Washington

Project: Prom/Graduation Parties, Bexar County Sheriff’s Office, Texas

Project: “Clean Sweep” Greenville County Sheriff’s Office, South Carolina

Project: “Eye In The Sky”, Rusk, Barron,
Sawyer & Washburn Counties, Wisconsin

Project Description: The “Eye In The Sky” program was developed to address a variety of problems associated with underage parties and underage drivers in a four county area of Wisconsin. This four county region is a heavily forested area with a population of approximately 87,000 people, covering more than 3,866 square miles.

The program includes four county Sheriffs’ Offices, a municipal Police Department and the Wisconsin State Patrol. Joining Rusk County in the program are the Sheriff’s Offices from Barron, Sawyer and Washburn, and the Rice Lake Police Department. The project allows participating agencies to schedule deployment of “Eye In The Sky” patrols in the four county target region. The heavily forested areas are generally only accessible by logging or fire roads, so normal ground patrols are impractical without air support. Each patrol involves a fixed wing aircraft and a minimum of four deputies — one from each county — and a trooper from the State Patrol on the ground. The ground patrol, assisted by the aircraft, patrol the four county area for underage drinking parties and related impaired driving.

In addition to the enforcement action, the agencies provide public education and media campaigns prior to the scheduled patrol. The agencies also work with all secondary schools in their counties. Students and law enforcement jointly develop their county brochure, conduct school assemblies and make school intercom announcements. The literature has the theme of “We Will Be Coming To Your Party.” More than 5,500 high school students received the message during the first year of the project.

Project Costs: The total funds allocated to the project for FY2000 were $5,977 Federal and $1,780 in local matching funds. The Federal dollars include funds for patrol hours for five agencies plus five aircraft flight rentals for five project days.

Project Results: Before the project was implemented, underage drinking parties were occurring routinely. Damage attributed to one drinking party was estimated at one half of a million dollars. Since the implementation of “Eye In The Sky” in 1998, there has been only one alcohol - related youth fatality in the region. This crash occurred four months after the end of the program in 1999. Additionally, there were no underage drinking party complaints received by the participating agencies.

Contact Information:
Rusk County Sheriff’s Office
311 E. Miner Ave., Suite L100
Ladysmith, WI 54848

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Project: “Fatal Vision” Awareness Program, Pierce County Sheriff’s Office, Washington

Project Description: In 1998 the Pierce County traffic unit began looking at ways to target the 15-20 year old age group with a program to lower the number of youth alcohol-related crashes in Pierce County. In May 1999, the traffic unit assembled a group of local high school students and with the assistance of the school, operated a closed driving course where students were allowed to utilize Fatal Vision glasses while driving, to get a better understanding of the effects of alcohol impairment while operating a vehicle.

The students were put through the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests and were given a chance to drive the course without the goggles. They then had the students don the glasses and perform the same tests. The final phase of this experience was a classroom speech by a victim of an alcohol-related incident and comments by the officers presenting the program. At the close of the program, students were provided literature describing what they had just experienced in the lab setting.

The overwhelming positive response from the students on program effectiveness, prompted the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office to pursue a grant to fund an ongoing program that could be expanded to all the county’s high schools in some manner in the future.

The Pierce County Sheriff’s Office secured funds for continuation of the Fatal Vision Program. They were used to purchase the necessary equipment i.e., traffic cones, a trailer to haul golf carts, signs, and other devices to set up a closed driving course. Golf carts were utilized in place of automobiles to safeguard against any damage to the surface of the ballfields and reduce liability. Each session is video taped so that students may have the opportunity to critique their own driving and for use as training aids in future classes if necessary.

Contact Information:
Pierce County Sheriff’s Office
1410 Brookdale Road East
Tacoma, WA 98445

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Project: Prom/Graduation Parties,
Bexar County Sheriff’s Office, Texas

Project Description: In a 1998 survey by the Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse, 72 percent of secondary students reported they had used alcohol. In 1998, 48.7 percent of traffic fatalities in Bexar County were alcohol-related compared to the national average of 38.6 percent. Twenty minors were involved in DUI crashes and six minors died in alcohol-related crashes. The Bexar County Sheriff’s Office helped organize a coalition of national, state, and local agencies along with community organizations to assist local area high schools conduct alcohol and drug free prom/graduation parties.

The Bexar County Sheriff’s Office helped two schools conduct “parties” that otherwise would not have been able to. They were able to coordinate “lock-in” parties for two high schools with approximately 250 graduating seniors. The seniors put on a play in which they depicted the consequences of drinking and driving, T-shirts were printed and handed out with an anti-drug acronym. Activities during the evening included dancing, games, recreational events, picture taking, reflection time, a dance marathon, movies, food and refreshments, door prizes were awarded to students who stayed for the entire party.

Contact Information:
Bexar County Sheriff’s Office
200 N. Comal Street
San Antonio, TX 78207

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Project: “Clean Sweep” Greenville County Sheriff’s Office, South Carolina

Project Description: In the summer of 1999, the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office implemented a Task Force to deal with a persistent problem associated with crowds of young people driving around aimlessly “cruising” during late-night weekend hours. After the bars and lounges closed, many young people would drive around, congregate in parking lots, and crowd into restaurants and convenience stores. Most only wanted to show off their cars and flirt, but unfortunately, some in every crowd were using drugs and alcohol. Violence became commonplace, as well as occasional looting of convenience stores. The Greenville County Sheriff’s Office quickly realized they could not handle the incidents with a small force of deputies.

The Sheriff’s Office requested additional personnel from local law enforcement agencies to establish a task force to put an end to the problems associated with late-night cruising and crowds. The Sheriff’s Office reassigned forty-five deputies from community patrol, traffic, vice and narcotics, warrants, and uniform patrol to work the task force. The were joined by twenty state troopers and about a half dozen agents of the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms. “Operation Clean Sweep” was kicked off on August 19 with over 70 law enforcement officers working the detail.

The primary enforcement activity used during “Clean Sweep” was traffic checkpoints, targeting streets and roads near problem areas. Sobriety checkpoints were an effective tactic because drugs and alcohol were commonly involved in past violent incidents. A “zero tolerance” approach was used in enforcement activities.

Project Results: During the three months of the detail nearly 1,500 arrests were made by deputies in the task force and almost 700 warrants were served. Over 200 DUI arrests were made and five percent of suspects arrested were illegally carrying firearms.

During the first full month of “Clean Sweep,” along with eliminating the violence associated with crowds and cruising, there was a dramatic drop in other criminal activity. Sexual assaults declined 59 percent, armed robbery went down 41 percent, aggravated assault were reduced by nearly 20 percent. Serious crime went down as arrests went up.

Contact Information:
4 McGee Street
Greenville, SC 29601

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driver with beer bottle