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1,700+ DWI Arrests Made During NC’s Operation Firecracker, 12 in High Country


State and local law enforcement officers arrested 1,785 drunk drivers during “Operation Firecracker”, the Governor’s Highway Safety Program’s July Fourth holiday “Booze It & Lose It” enforcement campaign.

Over the enforcement period of June 26 through July 5, law enforcement agencies across North Carolina issued 63,477 traffic and criminal violations during 6,571 sobriety-checking stations and saturation patrols.

Watauga County had 2 checkpoints over the Fourth of July weekend and netted six DWI arrests. Avery County, on the other hand, five checkpoints that netted four DWI arrests. Ashe County didn’t operate any checkpoints but still arrested two on DWI charges.

“The Fourth of July is a time we celebrate our nation’s birth and the freedoms we enjoy daily,” said Don Nail, director of the Governor’s Highway Safety Program. “I applaud the efforts of our state and local law enforcement officers for the number of impaired drivers they removed from our roads during the holiday, allowing our citizens to be free from the dangers those who chose to drink and drive present.”

The top five counties for DWI arrests during the “Operation Firecracker Booze It & Lose It” campaign were:

  • Wake County – 166
  • Robeson County – 115
  • Mecklenburg County – 93
  • Guilford County – 80
  • Cumberland County – 61

The N.C. Department of Transportation and Governor’s Highway Safety Program launched a summer marketing campaign, “Don’t Drink and Drive. You’re Smarter Than That” to complement enforcement efforts. The campaign focuses on building awareness of the variety of options that are readily available to get individuals home safely after drinking —including calling a friend, using a taxi, taking public transportation, or designating a driver.

For more information regarding “Booze It & Lose It” activities visit the GHSP website.