Holiday "Drive Sober or get Pulled Over" campaign kick-off - - Jackson, MS

Holiday "Drive Sober or get Pulled Over" campaign kick-off

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JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Christmas and the holidays would not be complete without the Mississippi Department of Public Safety's "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" campaign. The Mississippi Highway Patrol kicked-off their role in the nation-wide program at a news conference Wednesday morning.

The federally funded initiative will put an additional 285 troopers on the road during the Christmas and New Year's holidays. MHP officials say the state has averaged 30,000 DUI arrests a year since 2000.

Those statistics hit close to home for Mississippi House Speaker Phillip Gunn.  The republican from Clinton served as the media conference's keynote speaker who talked about losing his whole family to a drunk driver while he was in law school.

"I lost my parents and little sister to a drunk driver," Gunn said. "I didn't have any other siblings, so in one moment my entire, immediate family was taken from me."

Gunn went on to say that the drunk driver who was responsible for killing his family was sentenced to 60 years in prison.

According to DPS the campaign will be two separate patrol periods.  The Christmas period will be December 21 at 6 PM until midnight December 25. The New Year's period will run from December 28 and continue until midnight January 1, 2013.

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