SANTA CLARITA — City-based law enforcement agencies have increased patrols in a cooperative effort to thwart drunk drivers.
Officers from the California Highway Patrol office in Newhall and deputies from the Santa Clarita Valley sheriff's station began joint patrols Thursday night along the Golden State Freeway, Antelope Valley Freeway and city streets.
The cooperative effort, which includes sobriety checkpoints and personnel from each agency sharing patrol cars, is scheduled to continue through Sunday night. Similar patrols, with a CHP officer and sheriff's deputy in each car, are expected for the New Year's Eve weekend.
The number of drunk driving-related incidents typically rises during a holiday weekend.
In addition to the increased patrols, law enforcement authorities and Santa Clarita city officials have created a 30-second public service announcement warning residents about the penalties and hazards of drunk driving.
King Videocable is scheduled to broadcast the commercial intermittently through Jan. 1 on local cable channels, including ESPN, Prime Ticket and USA Network.
"Our goal is to remind residents that celebrating should not include drinking and driving," said Capt. Jerry Conklin of the Santa Clarita Valley sheriff's station.