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Don't be a naughty driver and get stopped by the CHP this holiday season

Posted at 6:14 PM, Dec 20, 2019

Christmas is now only days away which means many will be hitting the road to rejoice with family and friends and the California Highway Patrol will also be out keeping the roadways safe.

According to the CHP, more than 1,100 arrests were made across the state last year at Christmas time. They are hoping they won't have to add as many drivers to the naughty list this time around but are expecting an increase in traffic.

"Ideally, we don't want to put anyone behind bars on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day and we want you to get to one family gathering safely and not spend it in a hospital with your family because you got into a traffic collision," said Jordan Richards, Public Information Officer for the CHP Coastal Division.

The CHP will be entering into its maximum enforcement period on December 24, 2019 at 6 p.m. It will conclude on December 25, 2019 at 11:59 p.m.

Danielle Wilson-Wolfe, who is a resident of Cambria, said she has already noticed an increase in traffic.

"With the Christmas Market in Cambria, there has been a lot of traffic, especially in Cambria. Usually a quiet town but the traffic is picking up," she said.

CHP officers will be on the lookout for many things this year, including excessive speed, aggressive driving, as well as driving under the influence.

According to the CHP, all of its officers have received advanced training to identify intoxicated drivers, whether that be due to alcohol or drugs.

The CHP does not have any specialized devices to determine if someone is under the influence of drugs but will instead complete a field sobriety test.

Officials also want to remind everyone that driving high is still a DUI.

The CHP recommends drivers get plenty of rest, avoid distractions, and always buckle up.

Officers encourage the public to save lives this holiday season by reporting reckless drivers to 911.

According to the CHP, at least 16 people were killed and nearly 350 others were injured in crashes last year during the Christmas maximum enforcement period.