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Sheriff's office cracking down on impaired, aggressive, distracted drivers

The Washington County Sheriff’s Office (WCSO) arrested 77 impaired drivers in July. Of those, most of the impairment was due to alcohol, although at least 12 drivers were impaired with drugs — primarily marijuana or a combination of marijuana and alcohol together, said WCSO Sgt. Bob Ray.

Although still a small percentage of overall DUII (Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants) arrests, the number of marijuana-impaired drivers has shot up since the drug was legalized, according to Ray, who said there used to be only two of three marijuana-impairment arrests each month.

Sheriff’s deputies also cited 24 people in July for Minor in Possession (MIP) of alcohol or marijuana.

The WCSO will partner with the Oregon Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to continue such high-visibility enforcement patrols through the month of August, including extra patrols over the Labor Day holiday, which is known for dangerous crashes due to heavy traffic and impaired or aggressive drivers.

WCSO deputies will be looking not just for impaired drivers but aggressive drivers who are speeding or following too closely, as well as drivers who are using cellphones or not wearing seatbelts.

An extra “DUII patrol and Seatbelt Blitz” will run from Aug. 22 to Sept. 5.

Results of these efforts will be posted at the beginning of September.