The Roundup -

By Don Smies 

Drive Sober This Independence Day, & Every Day


This Independence Day, the Richland County Injury Prevention & DUI Task Force, Richland County Health Department and NHTSA want to remind drivers that Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving. Unfortunately, the summertime merrymaking can create dangerous road conditions, as some drivers hit the streets after drinking alcoholic beverages.

Make sure you celebrate the birth of our nation safely. If you are under the influence of any substance and you choose to get behind the wheel of a vehicle, you put everyone on the road in danger, including yourself. During the Fourth of July holiday, make sure you plan for a safe weekend of festivities.

According to the Montana Highway Patrol Fatality Crash Report, in 2019 there were 184 fatalities in motor vehicle crashes. Impaired driving (Alcohol or Drugs) accounted for 72.2% or 133 of those crash deaths. With Fourth of July festivities wrapping up in the evening or late at night, more vehicles will be on the road when it’s dark.In 2019, 75 people died in Montana due to motor vehicle crashes during the nighttime hours.

During this crazy time, we want our community to have a happy and safe Independence Day, one that they’ll remember for years to come, for all the right reasons. We’ve partnered with NHTSA to help remind drivers that Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving. Under no circumstance is it ever okay to drink and drive. If you’ve been drinking at a Fourth of July party, or for any occasion, find a sober ride home and, if you plan to be the sober driver, then don’t indulge. Your friends are relying on you.

If you have any questions, need some additional information on teen drivers or would like to be a member of the Injury Prevention/DUI Task Force please contact Don Smies, coordinator 406-433-2207. Check us out on Facebook,


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