Mercy Holds Press Conference on Drunk and Drugged Driving
Mercy Medical Center held a news briefing outlining the plans for this year’s holiday focus on keeping drunk and drugged drivers off the roads.
The initiative is part of Mercy’s Reality Education and Prevention Program (REAP). This year, Mercy hosted two guest speakers who are sponsoring safe rides programs. Attorney Ed Keane is again sponsoring free rides within a 15 mile radius for impaired drivers from December 19th through December 31st.
Jessee LaFramboise, a student from Morningside College, has started a new business in driving impaired drivers home in their own vehicle and then someone comes to pick him up.
Mercy's REAP program is also partnering with Jackson Recovery to distribute 36,000 napkins to local bars with a safe driving message. Mercy hopes that these efforts will help underscore the tragic toll that impaired driving brings to Siouxland every year, particularly around the holidays.
Carla Granstrom, Mercy’s REAP and Outreach Coordinator, reported that impaired driving is no accident. It is a serious crime. Last year there were 10,322 deaths and over 300,000 injuries from drunk and drugged driving crashes which is a 5% increase from the year before. Someone dies every 48 minutes. “This represents 32% of traffic fatalities,” says Granstrom. “It is estimated that about 20% of the population will be involved in an alcohol-related motor vehicle accident in their lifetime.”
“The deadly risks and costly consequences of driving while impaired are far too serious,” said Granstrom. “With increased enforcement efforts and well-trained law enforcement officers, if you are caught driving while impaired, you will be arrested.”
For more information, contact:
Deb Lemmon, Director of Marketing and Planning (712) 279-2294
Dianne Krier, Mercy Marketing and Communications Coordinator (712) 279-5682