All impaired drivers to be tested during “No Refusal Weekend”

Initiative is part of You drink. You drive. YOU LOSE.

The Kansas Attorney General’s Office, the Kansas Department of Transportation and law enforcement agencies from across the state are joining forces to crack down on impaired driving during the upcoming No Refusal Weekend, when all suspected impaired drivers who refuse breath testing will be subject to blood testing for alcohol.

Several northeast Kansas counties participated in the No Refusal Weekend, Aug. 19-20, to reinforce the purpose behind this year’s You drink. You drive. YOU LOSE. campaign. Anyone driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 grams per deciliter or higher is considered legally impaired. However, many impaired drivers refuse to submit to BAC testing in an attempt to avoid, or have reduced, the criminal sanctions they could face upon conviction.

“Alcohol and driving don’t mix,” Attorney General Derek Schmidt said. “Impaired driving is no accident—nor is it a victimless crime. The No Refusal Weekend brings prosecutors and law enforcement together to combat this danger on our roadways.”

On average in Kansas, impaired drivers cause 25 to 30 percent of traffic fatalities. Kansas averages nearly five people injured every day and one person killed every three days in alcohol-related crashes.

In 2016 alone, Kansas saw 1,119 impaired driving crashes where at least one driver was over .08 BAC.

“The aim of these efforts is to reduce the number of preventable deaths and injuries that occur when impaired drivers take to Kansas roads,” said Kansas Transportation Secretary Richard Carlson. “Think before you drink. Plan a safe ride home. Help us keep every friend, family member, and stranger from becoming another statistic. Let’s drive to zero fatalities on Kansas roadways.” More