SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Police and other public safety officials Thursday will launch a countywide effort to prevent alcohol-related deaths and injuries and to curb underage drinking over the Independence Day weekend.
The four-day effort called "Operation Safeguard" is set to include sobriety checkpoints, roving DUI patrols and stepped-up enforcement of the social-host laws that hold a party's host accountable for underage drinking, according to San Diego police.
Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman, county Undersheriff Ed Prendergast, other public safety officials and a representative of Mothers Against Drunk Driving will give a briefing to announce the start of the campaign at 10:30 a.m. at Ventura Cove.
Police officials said local communities typically see a spike in drunken driving and other alcohol-related injuries and deaths around the Fourth of July holiday. In the three days around and including Independence Day from 2008 to
2012, 54 alcohol-related deaths were reported, according to police citing statistics compiled by the county Medical Examiner's Office. Of the 54, 15 involved drunken driving and 21 were related to falls, alcohol poisoning or other accidental overdoses of a mix of alcohol and drugs, authorities said.
Police said underage drinking also increases during the summer. Law enforcement officers said they plan to "aggressively enforce" social-host laws that bar adults and minors from throwing parties where underage drinking takes place.
In the wake of the Gate Fire, which ignited May 20, the Bureau of Land Management has issued new restrictions for Southern California counties, including San Diego.
Veterans are being honored across San Diego County during Memorial Day weekend and dozens of Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts were among those spending their Saturday placing American flags at burial sites at the Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery.
With thousands of San Diegans expected to celebrate the holiday weekend at the beach, lifeguards are on high alert and a have a few warnings for those headed to the water.
U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris, D-California, is scheduled to visit local Navy personnel in San Diego and Coronado next week, her office announced Saturday.
A 30-year-old Vista man was arrested for drunk driving and failure to yield Saturday morning after leading Carlsbad police on a high-speed pursuit that ended with the suspect crashing into a pole, according to authorities.
A man, possibly armed, and holed up inside a home in the Bay Park community for about four hours Saturday surrendered to police without incident.
Vacationing homeowners were hit by thieves in Mira Mesa, but thanks to a smartphone app, the crooks did not get away with it.
Signs warning people to stay out of the water are once again posted in Imperial Beach after a new spill from Mexico dumped hundreds of thousands of gallons of sewage into the Tijuana River - polluting the South Bay.
Two defense contractors were sentenced to prison Friday for conspiring to steal more than $3 million worth of medical equipment from Camp Pendleton that the military had planned to ship overseas to treat injured Marines.