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Monroe police joins drunk driving program
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MONROE - The Monroe Police Department will take to the streets in force for the next two weeks as part of a national campaign to combat drunk driving.

"Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" is a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration campaign that increases the number of police patrols from today through Jan. 3 in order to reduce alcohol-rated accidents.

"It does make a dent in OWI cases," Monroe Police Chief Fred Kelley said.

Kelley said the campaign allows the department to increase its normal patrols from three to four officers to "a few more."

According to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, Wisconsin has the highest rate of drunk driving in the nation. Drunk driving incidents killed 223 Wisconsinites and injured nearly 3,000 in 2012.

"It does tend to be that there's more incidents during the holidays," Kelley said. "There's more people on the roads, and there's more people drinking for the holidays."

The Monroe Police participates in the campaign each year, Kelley said. Although it usually produces a handful of extra traffic stops, knowledge of the campaign is just as important, he said.

"If nothing else, it's a deterrent," Kelley said. "If people know this is happening, then they won't do it."