PACIFIC COUNTY, Wash. - Thanksgiving takes on a special meaning this year as the holiday "Drive Hammered, Get Nailed" campaign officially begins that day. Between Nov. 25 and Jan. 2, local law enforcement will conduct extra driving under the influence patrols throughout Pacific County to rid the roads of impaired drivers during the holiday season.

"In Washington, impaired driving is still the most frequent contributing factor in deadly collisions. During this time of year with holiday parties and celebrations, we urge everyone to plan ahead and choose a safe ride home," said Lowell Porter, director of the Washington Traffic Safety Commission.

The average blood alcohol level of people arrested in Washington for DUI is about .14. That's almost twice the legal limit of .08. Especially at this time of year, law enforcement officers statewide advise all holiday party-goers to designate a sober driver, take a taxi or choose not to drink alcohol because those who drive hammered will get nailed. This Drive Hammered, Get Nailed campaign is a joint effort between the Washington Traffic Safety Commission, law enforcement statewide and the Pacific County Traffic Safety Task Force.

In 2009, there were 41,006 people charged with DUI in Washington. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), an average of 30 people are killed every day on the nation's roadways as a result of alcohol-impaired crashes. However, there is good news: There were 10,839 alcohol-impaired driving deaths nationwide in 2009, a decrease of more than 7 percent from 2008.

For additional information about the Washington Traffic Safety Commission, visit www.wtsc.wa.gov

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