DUI arrests double during New Year’s holiday period, CHP says

The crowd enjoys live music during the New Year's Eve celebration in Grand Park, where no alcohol was served.
(Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

Drunk driving arrests over the New Year’s holiday period more than doubled both in Los Angeles County and statewide, according to statistics released Sunday by the California Highway Patrol.

Between 6:01 p.m. Dec. 31 and 6 a.m. Sunday, CHP officers in Los Angeles County made 219 DUI arrests, up from 104 the previous year. Statewide, the CHP made 1,072 arrests, a spike from the 457 they made over the same period last year.

Over the 84-hour period, 14 people in California were killed including two people from Los Angeles County. The same number was killed a year ago, with only one death in L.A. County.


CHP Officer Peter Bishop said it was not clear why the number of arrests doubled and could not provide a historical average. He added that he was not sure whether more officers were on the street this year versus last, but said he doubted that staffing was doubled.

“It’s actually shocking because we have so much available now,” Bishop said, referencing ridesharing services such as Uber, Lyft and Sidecar that people can call using their mobile phones.

During future holiday periods, he said, “we may need to have more enforcement out.”

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