Either the New England Patriots or the Seattle Seahawks will walk off the field as losers on Super Bowl Sunday.
Police Lt. Mark Mara hopes the same cannot be said of local drivers this Sunday.
“McMinnville Police Department, like the teams, are suiting up and having a playbook which holds ways of detecting impaired driving,” said Mara. “Unlike the Super Bowl results, McMinnville Police Department is hoping for no losers. Losers would be those arrested for driving under the influence.”
Residents are encouraged to plan ahead for their parties, if alcohol will be served.
“Line up designated drivers or have visitors stay until they are sober,” said Mara. “We aren’t trying to discourage people from having a good time. Just don’t drive impaired. We want everyone to have a safe Super Bowl Sunday.”
The department will be working with Warren County Sheriff’s Department and Tennessee Highway Patrol.
While law enforcement usually organizes saturated patrols during recognized holidays such as New Year’s Day, Christmas, and the Fourth of July, Super Bowl Sunday was added to the list several years ago.
“The Governor’s Highway Safety Office recognizes Super Bowl Sunday is a problematic day so they encourage agencies throughout the state to hold saturation patrols or a checkpoint,” said Mara.
Highly motivated and trained officers comprise the team conducting saturation patrols. All of the officers have basic standardized field sobriety testing. Some of the officers have advanced standardized field sobriety testing. A drug recognition expert and the District Attorney DUI prosecutor will be on standby to assist. Officers will be actively pursuing impaired drivers by patrolling the streets and conducting traffic stops.
Motorists can make the roads safer by reporting vehicles being operated in an unsafe manner. Call 668-7000 or 911. Please let the dispatcher know the street you are on and a detailed description of the vehicle. It would be helpful to provide the make, model, and color of the vehicle along with the license plate number.
Operation “Be a Survivor: Get a Designated Driver” has received funding from the Tennessee Governor’s Highway Safety Office.