TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) -- Reckless drivers will not be getting off with a warning this month. Six local law enforcement agencies are participating in what they're calling a 'Saint Patrick's Day' Mobilization Blitz.
Drivers who choose to speed or choose to get behind the wheel intoxicated could be facing anything from a fine of $169 or more to jail time. This blitz is part of a statewide initiative to keep drivers safe.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is funding the operation. It's allowing agencies to increase the number of officers on traffic patrol. They'll be showing zero-tolerance for people driving aggressively, driving over the speed limit and people driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
The year 2020 saw a decrease in drivers in Indiana, yet it also ranked as the third-highest year for traffic deaths in the past decade. As activity is set to increase across the state this month, Lafayette Police Traffic Unit Specialist, Officer Greg McDaniel said this kind of enforcement is necessary from time to time.
"It's really important to have presses like this for dangerous driving or drunk driving," said McDaniel. "It's a really serious thing to be driving a car and can be very dangerous if not taken correctly and handled with maturity."
He is warning drivers not to pick convenience over safety when it comes to deciding to get behind the wheel impaired.
"Might be the most convenient thing for you to grab your own keys and head off to where you're going to go, but what could result from that could be catastrophic, not only for you but for someone else," said McDaniel. "Talking about fatal crashes, they affect both sides of the coin so to speak."
March Madness taking place in Indiana this month is also a reason for this increase in patrol. The blitz began on Feb. 26 and will continue through Mar. 21.