Keeping roads safe on New Year's Eve

CREATED Dec 31, 2013

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MILWAUKEE – Law enforcement was out in full force New Year’s Eve to catch drunk drivers and keep the roads safe.

State Patrol officers said many people got the message and planned to take a cab or find another way to get home.

"Meeting some friends at a dinner party, then we are going to hang out on Brady Street," said Riverwest resident Tom Smith.

New Year's Eve is one of Smith's favorite celebrations, and he wants to continue celebrating for years to come, so he says he makes smart plans.

"I took the free bus and I plan on taking the free bus home," Smith said.

That's exactly what State Trooper David Hanson is hoping many choose to do.

"We're obviously looking for people unable to maintain their lane, crossing the lane lines," Hanson said.

Hanson says New Year's Eve is one of the top three worst drunk driving nights all year.

Two years ago Ed and Jean Thaves were killed on New Year's when a drunk driver went airborne smashing into the couple. That's something Hanson doesn't want to see again.

"The main goal is prevention tonight. Our goal isn't to write a lot of tickets, put a lot of people in county jails. We're hoping to have a preventative effect tonight," Hanson said.

Smith says he's also keeping an eye on his friends.

"While you think you have it all together, your friends may not," Smith said.