Authorities have one simple message for people thinking about driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol during the Fourth of July holiday this week: Don’t.
To hammer that point home, an impaired-driving demonstration was held on Tuesday in Glendale where volunteers got to wear special equipment simulating the effects of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol and driving through a course. The equipment involved wearing ankle and wrist weights, headphones that muffled sound or generated random beeping noises and vision-distorting goggles.
Cara Fong, an 18-year-old La Crescenta resident, said the equipment made driving incredibly difficult because it made her disoriented.
“I’ve never drove while drunk and just assumed your vision would be off and you wouldn’t see things straight,” she said. “After doing this, it’s worse than I thought it would be. It’s not worth it.”
The event was attended by several members of the Burbank, Glendale and Glendale Community College police departments as well as the California Highway Patrol.
“While we try to spread this message every year … we still experience a number of preventable traffic-collision deaths throughout the state of California,” CHP Capt. Tai Vong said.
During a four-day period surrounding the Fourth of July last year, Vong said 47 people across California died as a result of traffic collisions, three of which occurred in Los Angeles County.
In that same period, the CHP made 1,244 DUI arrests in the state. He said roughly 240 of those arrests were made in L.A. County.
To help mitigate any potential danger, authorities suggest using a designated driver, ride-share app or taxi service for transportation.