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Law enforcement applauds DUI prevention program

By Katherine Mozzone, KTVM Reporter, kmozzone@ktvm.com
Published On: Dec 12 2012 06:14:39 PM MST
Updated On: Dec 12 2012 10:20:26 PM MST
BOZEMAN, Mont. -

AAA announced the return of a familiar DUI prevention program, Operation Tipsy Tow.  It's a service that will take you and your vehicle home if you've had too much to drink this holiday season.

Gallatin County law enforcement officers hope folks will enjoy the holidays responsibly or make plans to get home safely if they've been drinking.

Wednesday, they met to remind motorists about one of their options, AAA's Operation Tipsy Tow.  If you live in Missoula, Bozeman or Belgrade, the free service will take you and your vehicle home, up to ten miles.

"It gives people an opportunity.  You can go out and you can celebrate the season but, at the same time, you have a way of making a good decision, getting home safely and protecting everybody around you," says Bozeman Chief of Police Ron Price.

They say just about everyone knows someone who's been involved in a DUI and impaired driving can have a lasting and often tragic effect on the motorist as well as other folks on the road.
     
That's why law enforcement and doctors alike are encouraging folks to take advantage of Operation Tipsy Tow.

"It's very difficult to prevent somebody from falling off a ladder or falling off of a roof or getting hurt on a trampoline, something like that.  But it's totally preventable to stop these people from getting into cars.  There are many aspects and many alternatives for them to get home.  This is a great one," says Bozeman Deaconess Hospital Trauma Coordinator Sam Miller.

Last year, Operation Tipsy Tow took home more than 50 Montanans.  Proponents say if the service gets even one impaired driver off the road, it will be a success.

Operation Tipsy Tow begins December 14th and runs through January 1st.

If you're inside city limits, you can call 1-800-AAA-HELP for the service.

Wait time varies depending on the call volume for the day or night and service is on a first come, first serve basis.

All tows are free, confidential and open to the public.