Devils Lake Police Chief Keith Schroeder wants area residents and visitors to know that the intent of stepped up DUI enforcement planned for this week is intended as a tool for increased education and awareness, not to target visitors here for ice fishing.
The organizers of the big tournament go above and beyond, according to Schroeder, to accommodate everyone and provide every opportunity to get rides, free of charge, even if they have had a few too many drinks during the evening's celebration.
When there are more people in town like for this big tournament, Schroeder says, it is a perfect opportunity to educate the public about the importance of having a designated driver, no matter when you might need one.
"This is the perfect opportunity to get the word out about being safe and making good decisions when it comes to drinking and driving," Schroeder says. "There are more people in town than normal and a big event is happening, so people can use it as an opportunity to increase their awareness of the issue."
If anyone is in doubt whether they should be driving, after consuming alcohol, the rule should be - when in doubt - don't.
How much is too much?
According to Schroeder it can vary with the individual, their physical size and tolerance. For some, more than one drink may be too much. The legal limit in North Dakota is a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 which translates to only a few drinks.
Courtesy Vans will be available on Friday night from 5 p.m. until the bars close at 2 p.m. and again on Saturday from 5 p.m. until 2 p.m. to and from the Memorial Building.
The numbers to call are
The vans are furnished by Devils Lake Chrysler Center, Lake Chevy and Market Place Motors with drivers that know the community well, so they will be able to take you where you need to go, no matter where that is.
The important thing is being safe and making good decisions while enjoying your self after a couple of cold days on the ice.
"Our goal is to stop hundreds of cars and have no arrests - that would be a perfect enforcement," Shroeder said.
The enhanced enforcement runs from January 25 through February 3 for the entire Northeast region.