Suffolk DA Tim Sini and the law enforcement agencies comprising the East End DWI Task Force warn against driving while impaired this holiday weekend. Photo: Stringer News Service

Don’t drink and drive this holiday weekend. That’s the message delivered today by Suffolk County District Attorney Tim Sini and police agencies.

Sini and representatives of the police agencies comprising the East End Drug Task Force at a press conference today in Hampton Bays announced stepped up patrols and enforcement actions this Memorial Day weekend in an effort to deter individuals from driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

The East End DWI Task Force will deploy officers to several DWI checkpoints at strategic locations in high-traffic areas. Officers at these checkpoints will be equipped with breathalyzers and will conduct field sobriety tests if they believe a motorist has been drinking or doing drugs and driving.

“Enforcement makes a difference,” District Attorney Sini said. “When people hear that their loved one or their friend was arrested for a DWI, they think twice about getting behind the wheel.”

Since the East End DWI Task Force was formed in 2012, it has made approximately 600 DWI arrests on holidays and peak tourism weekends throughout the year. In 2017, 16 people were arrested by the Task Force over Memorial Day weekend.

“We can’t articulate how many lives that may have saved,” District Attorney Sini said. “The officers on the Task Force, their chiefs and leaders are the reason why those numbers are less each year.”

District Attorney Sini also deputized approximately 30 police officers from the participating agencies to the Task Force in a swearing in ceremony, giving them jurisdiction to serve in enforcement efforts throughout the East End.

“The police departments here on the East End do a tremendous job keeping all the residents and visitors safe, which is a particularly complex task,” District Attorney Sini said. “They have certain year-round populations and those populations spike during the summer months. The East End DWI Task Force will allow for the pooling of our resources, working together to ensure that our roadways are safe.”

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