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Missouri Department of Transportation

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MoDOT News Release 

April 28, 2015 11:41 AM
One Moment Can Define You.
Youth alcohol awareness campaign encourages smart choices.

JEFFERSON CITY - Today's youth are full of hopes and dreams for their futures. Many have plans to be tomorrow's musicians, writers and athletes. However, one bad choice of getting behind the wheel after drinking could make them a killer. Their lives and the lives of others would be changed forever.

In the last three years, there were 54 fatal crashes and 174 disabling injury crashes involving an impaired driver under the age of 21. As a result of a young person making the wrong choice, 64 people died and 257 were seriously injured in these crashes.

Law enforcement will be on the lookout for underage impaired driving May 1-12 with a high visibility enforcement campaign. Timing of the campaign will coincide with statewide prom and graduation dates, which are often when teens and young adults consume alcohol.

"This is a very impactful campaign," said Bill Whitfield, chair of the executive committee of the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety. "The thought of becoming anything you want to be can be instantly overshadowed by the consequences of one moment, one bad decision to drink and drive."

Missouri has a Zero Tolerance Law.  If you are under 21, your license will be suspended if you're caught driving with even a trace of alcohol in your system. Consequences of drunk driving include jail time, the loss of driver licenses, or being sentenced to use ignition interlocks. Other financial hits include higher insurance rates, attorney fees, and court costs. In the worst cases, the underage driver becomes a killer.

Please remember that a seatbelt is your best defense in any traffic crash. Buckle up and Arrive Alive. For more information, please visit www.saveMOlives.com, or Facebook and Twitter at Save MO Lives.

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