UHP urging caution to all drivers ahead of New Year’s Day holiday

Dec 30, 2023, 10:06 PM | Updated: 10:21 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — Law enforcement is used to seeing busy roads between Christmas and New Year’s Day. However, what has been abnormal is the number of wrong-way crashes in recent weeks.

Utah Highway Patrol troopers are once again sounding the alarm, pleading with the public to stop driving impaired.

“They are not able to recognize what direction they are going, or where they are at,” said UHP Corp. Quincy Breuer. “They are not able to manipulate their vehicle or control it the way they should be.”

In the past few weeks, there has been an alarming uptick in wrong-way drivers, most of whom are also driving impaired.

One killed, two injured, including UHP trooper, in wrong-way crash

“The majority of them, if not all of them, have been related to severe impaired driving,” Breuer said. “To the point where they have gotten on roads, freeways and it’s taken law enforcement action to get them stopped.”

Breuer says it’s the job of law enforcement personnel to keep the public out of harm’s way.

“Our job is not to just be out there handing out citations,” Breuer said. “Our job is to keep the public safe.”

While the end-of-the year totals aren’t in, law enforcement predicts there will be more than 11,000 DUIs issued in the state in 2023.

“There is nothing wrong with us celebrating and enjoying the time with our families,” Breuer said. “But we need to be thinking about what our actions can do to the public or to others.”

The UHP is asking people who plan to drink, to have a sober ride planned ahead of time.

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UHP urging caution to all drivers ahead of New Year’s Day holiday